So you have decided you want to put lime on your lawn and you want to know how much?
When you add lime to your lawn it can quite dramatically change the pH level of your soil so it is important you get it right as if you get it wrong it could turn out to be an absolutely disastrous project.
In this article, I will not only tell you how much lime to put on your lawn but I will also go over some of the dangers that can happen if you apply the wrong amount. If you use the correct amount of lime it can transform your lawn and make it grow healthy and lush for many years to come.
I have applied lime to my lawn many times over many years so I do have some experience in this area but if you are unsure about carrying this out by yourself you may want to contact a lawn care professional who can check the pH with professional equipment and apply the correct amount of lime to your lawn.
Have a read and I hope you find out the answers to your questions and achieve the beautiful lush green lawn of your dreams.
This is how much lime you should put on your lawn to raise the pH of 1000 square feet by 1, depending on the soil type – Sandy soil add 25 pounds, Loamy soil add 75 pounds, Clay soil add 100 pounds.
How much lime should I add to my lawn?
If you have tested your soil for the pH level and have discovered that it would be beneficial to apply lime it is important you add the correct amount.
If you don’t add enough lime then you will not see the full benefit or maybe you won’t see any benefit at all whereas if you add more than is required it could have a detrimental effect on your grass.
When you are calculating how much lime to apply to your lawn there is an important factor you should take into consideration and that is what type of soil do you have?
The three soil types I am talking about are whether you have sandy, loamy, or clay soil as depending on the soil type you should be applying a different amount of lime.
When calculating how much lime to put on your lawn it is normally calculated on a per 1000 square feet basis. So for ease of calculation lets just say you have a 1000 square foot law, this is how much lime you should add to raise the pH by 1 for the different soil types:
- Sandy soil – add 25 pounds of lime
- Loamy soil – add 75 pounds of lime
- Clay soil – add 100 pounds of lime
How long does it take for lime to work on grass?
When you apply lime to your lawn it is not a quick fix and you will not see the effects immediately or possibly anytime soon, it will take time.
Depending on the starting condition of your lawn and the type of lime you apply it can actually take 1-3 years for the full effects of applying lime to fully materialize and improve your lawn. However, you will probably start to see some effects after a few months.
Here are the types of agricultural lime for your lawn that are popular:
- Dolomitic Lime – dolomite is a mineral that is found in limestone and it is rich in calcium and magnesium. It is normally sold in pellets or powder that can be easily spread over your lawn. Dolomitic lime is a slow-acting lime but this has the benefit of making it less likely to burn your plants or grass.
- Calcitic Lime – calcitic lime it the lime you will see the fastest results from applying it to your lawn. However this lime is so powerful there is a real risk that you will burn your lawn if you use it, this type of lime is probably best left for professional lawn care experts.
What are the signs your lawn needs lime?
So you suspect that your lawn needs a treatment of lime to change the pH level of your soil and make it better suited for growing grass there are a number of signs you can look out for…
- If your grass has lost its green color and is instead a shade of yellow.
- If weeds such as moss and clover start to thrive and take over your lawn.
- When you apply fertilizer to your lawn you see practically no improvement to your grass.
These are signs that your lawn has become too acidic to be ideal for grass to grow healthy and lush green. If you notice these signs on your lawn I wouldn’t just go out and apply a ton of lime treatment as these are simply indications.
The only way to properly and accurately check the pH of your lawn is to test it, this could be by using a home test or by calling in professionals to do a test for you.
If you are not sure about applying lime it would probably be a good idea in the interest of preventing a total disaster to call in the professionals because if you get it wrong you could accidentally destroy your lawn.
What are the benefits of putting lime on your lawn?
First of all, you should be aware that not all lawns will benefit from putting lime on it and some lawns will never need to be treated with lime to alter the pH level.
If you have tested your soil or have hired a professional to test and apply lime then there are a number of benefits you will see for your lawn, however it won’t be immediate and it will more than likely be several months before you start to see any change.
- By making the pH level more ideal for grass your grass will start to thrive and turn from yellow into the beautiful dark lush green color that healthy lawns should be.
- You should start to notice less weeds growing as weeds normally only take over where the soil is not ideal for grass, making your soil ideal for thriving grass will naturally result in fewer weeds.
- After you have applied lime to your lawn you will see the benefit of fertilizer being highly effective again, this means adding fertilizer will not seem like a waste of time anymore you will see a benefit.
Can lime kill a lawn?
The good news is that if you have overdosed your lawn with a lime application you probably won’t kill.
The pH level of your lawn will now spike massively which will make your grass unhealthy and it will probably turn yellow for a while.
If you want to partake in a battle of chemicals you could apply sulfur as that will lower the pH level of your lawn but it’s up to you whether you want to have a battle of chemicals on your lawn.
If you have overdosed your lawn with lime the best solution I feel is just to wait and ride it out and give it regular water as that will help flush the excessive lime out.
So the good news is you won’t completely kill your lawn but you will cause it damage that will last for a while.
Maybe it’s best to get professionals in when it’s time to put lime on your lawn.
Can lime burn the lawn?
Lime for your lawn is a chemical and there are many different types you could use for your lawn and there are also many different types you should not use for your lawn.
As long as you use a lime that is designed for putting on lawns there is very little risk that you will burn it.
If you apply lime around some other plants it could be harmful but applying it on a grass lawn will not burn it.
Applying lime to your lawn is not something I would recommend unless you really know what you are doing so if you are unsure you should contact an expert lawn care professional to first test the pH to assess if it needs lime and then to actually apply it in the correct dose.
Will lime kill weeds?
If your soil is in good condition for grass your lawn will thrive and this is the best way to prevent weeds from growing on your lawn, make your grass thrive.
Weeds are invasive and they will only take over a lawn when the soil condition is not ideal for grass.
To improve the condition of your soil you could also try aerating, fertilizing, and maintaining a lawn mowing routine, as all these things will contribute towards improving the condition of your lawn and help prevent and get rid of weeds.
Is lime dangerous for dogs?
Ok, so lime is just as harmful to dogs as it is for humans.
When you carefully apply lime to your lawn it is pretty unlikely to do you any harm.
If you were to start sniffing up powdered lime or eating lime pellets it will do you harm and that is why it can be dangerous for dogs or any other pets.
You may want to keep your pets off the area you have applied lime to until there has been a significant downpour of rain that would help the lime be washed down into the soil where it is needed, if you live somewhere that has long periods of drought you may want to give your lawn a good watering.
When the lime is no longer on the surface of your lawn it would then be safe to allow your pets back on it with no worries.
Will lime kill grubs?
Applying lime to your lawn will not kill grubs directly but it may make your lawn less appealing to them.
It’s like if you have a choice between breathing beautiful fresh clean air or air that is tainted by chemicals, any person with common sense would go towards the clean air.
If you do decide to apply lime as a deterrent to grubs another deterrent you could use would be to plant some trees that would provide some shade to your lawn as grubs don’t like that.
However, if you are adding trees for shade you must be careful to not overdo it as whilst grubs don’t like shade it’s also not the best thing in the world for growing a beautiful, healthy, lush, green lawn.