Soil Acidity

Lime performs various offices in the soil, but farmers

should be concerned chiefly about only one, and that is the destruction

of acids and poisons that make the soil unfriendly to most forms of

plant life, including the clovers, alfalfa, and other legumes. Lime was

put into all soils by nature. Large areas were originally very rich in

lime, while other areas of the eastern half of the United States never

were well supplied. Within the last ten years it has been definitely

determined that a large part of this vast territory has an actual lime

deficiency, as measured by its inability to remain alkaline or "sweet."

Many of the noted limestone valleys show marked soil acidity. There has

been exhaustion of the lime that was in a state available for union

with the acids that constantly form in various ways. The area of soil

thus deficient grows greater year by year, and it can be only a matter

of time when nearly all of the eastern half of this country will have

production limited by this deficiency unless applications of lime in

some form are made. When owners of soil that remains rich in lime do

not accept this statement, no harm results, as their land does not need

lime. On the other hand are tens of thousands of land-owners who do not

recognize the need of lime that now exists in their soils, and suffer a

loss of income which they would attribute to other causes.

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