You’ve heard your neighbors or parents talking about liming their lawn. Is this something that you should be doing too?

The secret to a beautiful lawn starts in the soil. Healthy soil with the correct pH ensures that your turf aboveground is thick, green, and healthy. While fertilizers help feed the soil, soil amendments, such as lime, correct an acidic pH.

Applying lime to a lawn
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How to Know if You Need Lime

How do you know if you need to add lime? You first need to perform a soil test. You want a commercial soil test that will give you specific information regarding how much lime or other soil amendments are required to improve the pH.

Lawn care experts recommend using only a commercial-grade soil test that you can get through your local extension office, or you can buy one from a commercial lawn care vendor. While a home soil test will tell you what’s missing in your soil, it won’t recommend how much lime is needed to fix the problem. When you buy a soil test kit through your local extension office, you’ll get a recommendation on how much lime you need to fix the low pH in the soil.

When You Need to Lime Your Lawn

Experts generally recommend adding lime to soil anytime from fall to early spring. Some prefer to lime just before the first frost in the fall, so the soil has all winter to absorb the lime. The only practice you should generally not follow is to add lime to a lawn that is wilted and dry, to one that is wet and soggy, or to one that is currently frosted.

How to Lime Your Yard

There are multiple different forms that lime comes in, but most use it in pellet form, as it’s easier to apply than powder. If using pellets, it’s best to use a drop or rotary type spreader. Refer back to your soil test to know how much lime you should add. Remember, you only have to lime your lawn every few years—always test your soil before applying it.

When applying, you’ll put half your total amount of lime into the spreader and walk horizontally across your lawn. Then, fill your spreader with the rest of the lime and work it vertically up and down until you cover the entire area. Finally, water your lawn, so the lime can absorb into the ground.

You can have a lovely lawn when you fix the soil’s pH that houses it. Remember, it starts with a soil test and recovers with the proper amount of lime added to the soil.