My lawn ph is terribly low! I just measured it and the meter is saying it’s only slightly above 5.0. I know this seems really low and I’m sure this is why I’m having such a problem getting my Fescue to grow. But right now it’s late spring and I don’t know how to get the PH up in a hurry. What can I apply that will be fast working? I don’t think my fertilizer is working at all and from what I’ve read, the ph might be at fault. What do you suggest?

First, stop applying fertilizer or fungicide or anything else for now. It’s imperative that the PH gets up to at least a 6.0 before anything else is applied as explained in our Soil PH article. When you get a reading that’s low and it’s during the growing season, the use of Liquid Lime should be considered. It’s fast acting and easy to apply. Most importantly, you should be able to get the PH to move up in a short amount of time. Once you get it up to over 6.0, be sure to keep watching it closely by measuring it monthly. This way you’ll be able to see any movement and make adjustments as needed. Remember, anything under a 6.0 is usually bad and once the soil is down around a 5.0, it’s almost impossible for the turf to utilize food properly. At this point it’s hard to say if this is the only problem your soil might have but until you get it back up over 5.0, we won’t be able to tell. Start applying the liquid lime right away and once you get it up over 6.0, let us know and we’ll advise you on fertilizer, fungicide, etc.

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I’m pretty sure my soil ph is on the low side. I’ve had it tested in the past but the local nursery wants me to bring them soil for the test. Is there anyway I can test the soil here at my house without going through all this effort?

Testing your lawn soil ph should be done at least twice a year. Since the ph is always changing, it’s important that you monitor it’s measurement so you can make adjustments when needed. If the soil ph rises above 7.0 or below 6.0, you’ll start to have ramifications. Fortunately being able to get a soil measurement has never been easier. The newest Soil Test Probes enable you to get fairly accurate readings from your lawn and garden instantly. We recommend you measure your lawn soil ph by taking measurements for every 200 sq/ft. You should do this at least every 6 months; every quarter if the soil has a history of changing over time. More information about the importance of lawn ph levels can be found in our Soil PH article.

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