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This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 43 No. 2, p. 343-347
    Received: Feb 6, 1978
    Accepted: Oct 5, 1978

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Effect of Limestone Variables on Amendment of Acid Soils and Production of Corn and Coastal Bermudagrass1

  1. V. A. Haby,
  2. W. B. Anderson and
  3. C. D. Welch2



Three particle size ranges of calcitic and dolomitic limestones were applied at 4.5, 9, and 13.5 metric tons/ha. Evaluations were designed to determine the most efficient treatment for neutralizing soil acidity, and increasing crop production in Katy fine sandy loam (pH 5.2) and Boy loamy fine sand (pH 5.4). Liming effects were evaluated by soil and plant analyses. Efficiency rating (ER) was used to describe the limestone particle size ranges. Finer limestone particles were assigned higher relative efficiency values. The sum of the products of particle size percentage ranges multiplied by the relative efficiency assigned those ranges, times the neutralizing value of that limestone is the ER.

Increases in soil pH were proportional to limestone ER and application rate. Calcitic limestone neutralized soil acidity more rapidly than did dolomitic. We found a statistically significant increase in calcium (Ca) in the 30- to 46-cm depth of Boy loamy fine sand at the 13.5 metric ton/ha rate of ER 110 calcitic limestone. This was probably due to 689 kg of N/ha applied as NH4NO3 the first year following limestone treatment. Magnesium (Mg) increased in the 30- to 46-cm depth due to all dolomitic treatments.

Limestone did not increase the yield of corn (Zea mays L.) or Coastal bermudagrass (Cynodon Dactylon L. Pers.) in the harvest year.

All treatments of calcitic limestone significantly increased the Ca percentage in corn. All dolomitic limestone treatments except the ER 26 material applied at 4.5 metric tons/ha increased Mg concentration in corn leaves and Coastal bermuda-grass. Manganese toxicity occurred in corn plants growing in nonlimed plots the third season following treatment. Soil acidity and reducing conditions contributed to the toxicity.

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