Water, Air, and Soil Pollution

, Volume 85, Issue 1, pp 143–152 | Cite as

Application of lime and wood ash to decrease acidification of forest soils

  • K. J. Meiwes


Liming and wood ash application are measures to decrease acidification of forests soils. The assessment of lime requirement can be based on that base saturation, which indicates a low risk of acid toxicity. Because of a wide spread Mg deficiency in Central European forests, Mg containing lime is normally applied. Ash from untreated wood is applied to decrease soil acidity as well as to improve K and P nutrition. In wood ash, K is the most soluble nutrient, follwed by Ca and Mg. The overall dissolution rate of lime applied to the forest floor is about 1t ha−1 a−1. After liming, soil solution alkalinity and Mg concentrations increase markedly, while changes of Ca, H ions and Al concentrations are less pronounced. After the application of wood ash, K concentrations increase due to the high K content and the high solubility of K in wood ash. After the application of a sufficiently high dosage of lime to the forest floor, the decrease of acidity in deeper soil layers may need decades because of the low solubility of lime. Nitrification and nitrate leaching induced by lime or wood ash may reduce their acid buffering efficiency.


Acidity Lime Leaching Alkalinity Forest Soil 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. J. Meiwes
    • 1
  1. 1.Forest Experiment Station of Lower SaxonyGöttingenGermany

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