What is Palagonite?
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Comparing Palagonite with liming programmes
Liming is the application of calcium and magnesium rich carbonates and hydroxides (usually limestone and dolomite) to soils to neutralise soil acidity and increase activity of soil bacteria. Ag Lime is ground calcium carbonate that reacts with acids thereby increasing the pH of the soil and returning it towards a neutral pH at 7. As an undesirable consequence every tonne of lime that is neutralised through the application, 400 kilograms of carbon dioxide escapes into the atmosphere. Palagonite contains plentiful amounts of plant available calcium and magnesium and although the levels do not compare with Ag lime and dolomite, the retention of the macro and micronutrients in acidic soils will over time lead to improvements in soil quality which would be unobtainable with liming alone. Repeated applications of Palagonite blended with composted organic matter should lead to long term improvements in the pH of the soil and overall improvement in soil health. Palagonite itself has a pH ranging from 8 to 8.5. Using Palagonite consequently provides a longer term solution to soil acidification. A mixture of Palagonite and Ag lime can also be used where a more rapid pH adjustment is required.