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Old 04-04-2007, 08:37 AM   #1
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Default Lime - Pellett vs. Powder

I have just gotten off the phone with the seed merchant. He can get me pelletized lime for $179 per ton, or powdered lime for $40 per ton. He says that the pelletized lime will raise the ph almost immediately, but the powdered will take 6 - 8 months to really start working. The pelletized can be spread with a spinner spreader, and the powdered is an absolute nightmare to spread. He said the pelletized will take 400 lbs per acre, and the powdered takes 3 tons per acre to do the same job, based upon my soil sample results. In the long run, I am saving a bunch of money and I can hault the pelletized myself, so I will buy a good spinner spreader. My question is, does the pelletized lime lose its effectiveness after a short period of time, as opposed to powdered which I believe last a little longer. Thanks for any input.
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Old 04-04-2007, 08:53 AM   #2
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Default RE: Lime - Pellett vs. Powder

I have never used the pellets, always used the pulverized. One thing about the pulverized is use it after the first rain or the run-off will wash it to the lowest areas. That goes for any Fertilizer also.
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Old 04-04-2007, 09:26 AM   #3
 
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Default RE: Lime - Pellett vs. Powder

depends when you want to plant you food plot.
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Old 04-04-2007, 09:32 AM   #4
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Default RE: Lime - Pellett vs. Powder

I think either you misunderstood him or he doesn't know much about lime.

First, the pelletized lime will take longer to start working than the pulverized or powdered lime. This is mostly just common sense. The pellets will take a much longer period of time to disolve into the ground than the powder will.

Second, a ton of lime is a ton of lime. 400lbs of lime is 400lbs of lime. There is no way that 400lbs of pelletized lime will do the same job of increasing the ph of your soil that 3 tons of pulverized lime will do.

For smaller acreage it can be difficult to get someone to come spread the lime but if you are close to some other farms sometimes you can split a load. Most of the time you can pay to have the pulverized lime spread cheaper than you can buy the pelletized lime and spread it yourself. Sometimes for small out of the way food plotsyou haveto buy the pellets and spread it yourself, but it generally is more expensive to do it that way and much more work.

That's my 2 cents.

P.S. - I've never spread or bought lime so I may not know what I'm talking about but I've read a few posts on the subject and think I have a handle on it.

Nathan


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Old 04-04-2007, 10:04 AM   #5
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Default RE: Lime - Pellett vs. Powder

I might be wrong on the pelletized lime and how fast it acts. Doing some more reading most of the pelletized lime is a very fine powdered pulverized lime made into pellets with a binding agent. When it comes into contact with soil moisture it disolves the same as the fine powdered pulverized lime. The only drawback is that it might not be spread as uniformly as the pulverized lime.

Also with the pulverized lime it generally does have a small mix of larger sizes that will help to increase the ph over a longer period of time. Some of the stuff I read made it sound like 30% of the pulverized lime would be very very fine powder, 50% would be fine powder and 20% would be a coarse powder.

The pulverized lime is still is equally effective as the pelletized lime and there is no way that 400lbs of pelletized lime will do the same job as 6,000lbs of pulverized lime.

FWIW, Nathan
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Old 04-04-2007, 11:32 AM   #6
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Default RE: Lime - Pellett vs. Powder

To spread pulverized lime you will need a specialized spreader (with and auger to keep lime from packing in. Pelletalized lime is can be spread with an ATV or other type of broadcast seeders. Usually, if you are getting bulk lime, they will drop a spreader with it (at least where I am). If you get a speader, go with the pulverized.

As far as a ton of lime being equal to a ton of lime - that is not necessarily the case. Yes a ton is a ton, but there is a thing called %ENV, which simply is how "strong" the lime is. So if you get a ton of 50% ENV lime and a ton of 100% ENV lime, the 100% has twice as much effectiveness. To put it another way, if your soil result says you need a ton of lime/ac. and you get the 50% ENV variety, you will need to apply 2 ton/ac.
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Old 04-04-2007, 12:15 PM   #7
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Default RE: Lime - Pellett vs. Powder

Aglime, barn lime, powdered lime, pulverized lime, garden lime, pellitized lime is all ground limestone mined out of a quarry and ground up. What matters is how fine it is ground up, and how much carbonates there are in the limestone. The carbonate is what nutralizes acid soil and may be 40% of limestone composition. Most the carbonate will be calcium carbonate, and 1 to 15% might be magnesium carbonate. Pure magnesium carbonate is "dolomite". When the limestone contains over 5% magnesium carbonate it may be called "dolomitic lime". Composition depends on where the limestone was quarried, and sometimes even what part of the quarry it came from.

Pellitized lime is just powdered lime with a binder addedto form tiny pellets, making it easy to spread in any conventional spreader. The question is how much weight is lime, and how much did the binder dilute the lime you want to spread? For all practical purposes, pelletized lime is powdered lime with a binder. The smaller the particle, the quicker it reacts with the soil. How long the effect lasts depends on the soil, organic content, buffering capacity, ect.

There is no standard for ground limestone where Aglime is this, and barn lime = that ....it varies all over the map. Particle size, and lime composition are the main criteria. There are websites out there that will expain the particle size and composition formulas for application rates.

The important thing is to spread lime, and spread what you have the ability to spread. If your plots are less than an acre, powdered bagged lime is often easier to spread by hand than through a spreader. Tear the bag open and fling it around .... yes it is dusty.

LIme leaches into the soil very, very, very slowly. You want to disk it in before planting when ever possible ... same with potassium and phosphorus.


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Old 04-04-2007, 01:24 PM   #8
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Default RE: Lime - Pellett vs. Powder

Quote:
ORIGINAL: doughboysigep
As far as a ton of lime being equal to a ton of lime - that is not necessarily the case. Yes a ton is a ton, but there is a thing called %ENV, which simply is how "strong" the lime is. So if you get a ton of 50% ENV lime and a ton of 100% ENV lime, the 100% has twice as much effectiveness. To put it another way, if your soil result says you need a ton of lime/ac. and you get the 50% ENV variety, you will need to apply 2 ton/ac.
This is true, but you can buy pulverized lime that is just as strong as pelletized lime. Just because it is pulverized doesn't mean that it isn't as strong.
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Old 04-04-2007, 03:02 PM   #9
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Default RE: Lime - Pellett vs. Powder

Don't know where you are located, but you should be able to rent a "tag a long" trailer filled with pulverized lime to spread on your patch, if it is a smaller area. It isn't that hard to spread as the tag a long has a live bottom that feeds the spinners. The people at the farm supply should be able to set the feed adjustment to your needs.
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Old 04-04-2007, 05:49 PM   #10
 
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Default RE: Lime - Pellett vs. Powder

There is a big difference in the speed that they work and the amount of time they fork for. Pellet lime will increase the soil ph very quickly, but might need to be done more fequently (every other year). Pulverized lime will take much longer, but will last much longer. Almost anywhere will recommend you limewith pulverizedlime 8 to 12 months prior to planting crops like clover and alfalfa. The reason for this difference in time is due to the actual size of the lime particles. After the bonding agent disolves in the pellet lime, it is actually much finer than strait pulverized lime. This is the same reason that it will wash out of the soil quicker.
I have never heard ofpellet being cheaper than pulverized lime though. I think he might have given you bad information about the aplication rates.
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