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PostPosted: Tue Sep 04, 2007 6:09 pm 
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Joined: Sun Sep 02, 2007 4:17 pm
Posts: 9
Location: St. Amant,LOUISIANA
Hello to everyone here. I've been reading, but not a member for a while, but decided to take the plunge .:D

I've been gardening for years, but only organic gardening for about 6 months. I live in southern Louisiana, which is why I hesitated to join and ask a lot of questions, but I couldn't find any info in my area, so hopefully we can adapt Texas knowledge to Cajun country. I live in between Baton Rouge and New Orleans, right on the line between zones 8 and 9. Hot, humid, and rainy.

Here's my question.

I garden in raised beds; due to the excess rain we get they drain the best, and you don't have the weed problems. I took 6 months to build up my soil using compost (I have Capt'n CompostAL's book), well rotted manure, peat moss, and most of the things listed in the Dirt Doctor's recipe for potting soil.

I planted some muskmelons in one bed, and they did wonderfully. I planted some fall tomatoes and peppers that I raised from seed, and they didn't do very well. I also planted some marigolds as a companion planting, and they are doing great.

I brought 2 soil samples (I have currently 4 beds, and am building 4 more) up to the LSU AG center for testing. Everything came back high, including the PH. Here's the results:
______________Bed 1________ Bed 4
PH........................... 7.07.....................7.37
Phosph, ppm.......1406.00..............1867.00
Potassium, ppm.....843.00................811.00
Calcium................3086.00..............3444.00
Magnesium...........1661.00..............1150.00
Sodium.................. 250.20.................391.80
Sulfur....................... 81.60...................40.24
Copper...................... 2.15......................2.07
Zinc...........................76.70...................74.10

The test results tell me that everything is either high, very high, or excessive, but they don't tell me what to do about it, if anything.

They only one I know for sure I need to change is the Ph; and I think I need to lower it to about 6.25 or so, but I don't know how. Most everything I read tells how to raise the Ph with lime.

How do I lower the Ph on these 4 x 12' beds? Are any of those other numbers anything to worry about and change?

I have lots of other questions, like about planting my garlic this fall, growing onions from seed, growing potatoes in the south, etc. but I need to get my soil right first.

Thank you for all your help.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2007 6:02 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2007 9:15 am
Posts: 21
Location: Plainview,TEXAS
Dirt doctor says that vinegar (cider) , greensand or sulfur. I would Just fill my sprayer with the vinegar and spray the top of the siol until it is damp and keep it up until the ph is right . once the organics have time to really work ,about 3 years I think you wont have to worry about any of this. I use compost cornmeal rabbit food & molasses.and never have a soil test. and have great luck with tomatoes.


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