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What’s Soil pH and Why Do I Care?

By   /  July 15, 2013  /  1 Comment

Every soil test you get back tells you what your soil’s pH level is, and you’ve probably used that to figure out ways to improve your pasture’s productivity. But what exactly is pH and what is it doing to your forages?

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Soil pH is a measure of acidity. It is important because it affects the availability of nutrients fo
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About the author

Author and editor emeritus

Rachel's interest in sustainable agriculture and grazing has deep roots in the soil. She's been following that passion around the world, working on an ancient Nabatean farm in the Negev, and with farmers in West Africa's Niger. After returning to the US, Rachel received her M.S. and Ph.D. in agronomy and soil science from the University of Maryland. For her doctoral research, Rachel spent 3 years working with Maryland dairy farmers using management intensive grazing. She then began her work with grass farmers, a source of joy and a journey of discovery.

1 Comment

  1. judith gardner says:

    -I am very interested in this . We have a smallholding in central scotland and I am currently keeping a couple of shetland cattle , osb pigs and a ‘working’ pony along with chickens. I am trying to understand the complex issues of soil conditions and animal health-are scottish breeds adapted to thrive on acidic soils given natural pasture and forage? Or is that rushing evolution to expect such swift adaptation and do I have to provide mineral supplements. Our old pony has developed arthritis despite a forage diet and am wondering if he is defficient in certain minerals-these symptoms will become apparent in older stock which is irrelevent to most farmers but for smallholders with house cows an important consideration. Thanks for information.

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