Feeding Your Soil - Step #3


Optimizing Your Soil


Sulfur is often a missing link in soils we evaluate. Sulfur is used both as a nutrient and a natural soil acidifier. It takes a lot of sulfur to adjust the pH of a soil to any significant degree, but it is also difficult to over-feed sulfur. It is an important nutrient in the soil food web and plays a vital role, alongside Nitrogen, in healthy, prolific, uniform growth. If your pH is too low, but your sulfur levels are also low, you can get away with a surprisingly low application of a readily available form of sulfur like Key To Life’s Silver Bullet. This can provide the required nutrition without drastically affecting the soil pH, giving you the health and yield that you want. Also, small applications of sulfur via the drip system keeps the immediate root zone in balance.

Micronutrients/Heavy Metals are oftentimes forgotten when examining soil. Not only are they important, but they can actually play an essential role in the uptake of other nutrients in the soil system. The ratios/balance of certain micronutrients vs primary and secondary nutrients play a direct role in their availability to plants. For example, Calcium vs Magnesium needs to be generally held at an 8:1 ratio. This is important because you may need a certain amount of either one of those to help adjust the balance. There are over 25 essential nutrient balance/ratios like this that exist in a complete soil food web!


Inoculants like Microbes & Fungi are the next step to achieving nutrient balance, as well as the soil system as a whole. Having a balanced culture of inoculants to continually break things down is absolutely essential when using living biology in your soil. Too much of any single link in a particular culture can potentially swing the balance. If you balance things correctly, not only will you achieve the full NPKSCaMicro fixation, reduction/breakdown, and delivery; the metabolism of these microbes will actually self-feed other microbes in the culture and allow a balanced building of the soil food web as a hole. Building a harmonious community starting with the smallest members of that community is the fastest way to building a well-balanced ecosystem.

Check back Monday for… Step #4 - Amendment Application

 

Additional reading/resources:

What is Soil Health? An Interactive Exploration of Soil Health and How to Improve It

Also check out our YouTube Channel for more great tips!


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