House Plants/Alkaline Soil

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Question
Hello. I just did a soil pH test for my plants and I realized that some of the old soil I've been using is way too acidic. I was wondering if you had any tips on how to safely make the soil more alkaline to a neutral pH for my plants? I have looked u[ ways to change the soil pH and all that is coming up is adding lime. Do you know of any other ways (maybe with household products) that could make soil more alkaline? Thanks

Answer
Hi Victor,

What pH reading are you getting that concerns you? Most indoor plants do best in moderately acidic soil. Are your plants exhibiting any specific symptoms that can be attributed to nutrient deficiency? Never fix something unless you are sure it is truly broken!

Assuming that your soil needs to be more alkaline, then horticultural lime is the standard treatment that all professionals use. It is safe, available and not expensive, so I am not sure why you are seeking a home remedy alternative. You could try baking powder, but you would have to experiment over time to find the right proportions because there is no hard information on using home remedies. It can take a month or more for soil pH to change enough to make a difference.

Please let me know if any of this is unclear or if you have any additional questions.

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Will Creed, Interior Landscaper
Horticultural Help, NYC

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Will Creed

Expertise

I am the only expert in this category with professional hands-on experience and knowledge of all indoor plants. I can answer questions regarding light, water, fertilizer, repotting, pruning and humidity and temperature requirements. I can identify plant pests and provide information on safe, effective treatments. My answers are based on 35 years of professional experience and scientific research and are clear and easy to understand. I do NOT use search engines to find answers to your questions. If you read my previous posts here, you will get a good idea as to how thorough and professional my answers are.

Experience

I have over 35 years of professional indoor landscaping experience caring for plants in homes, offices, building lobbies, stores, restaurants, and other adverse environments. I have written extensively on the care of indoor plants, including a 260 page book. My specialties include Ficus trees, low light plants, repotting, pest control, and re-blooming holiday plants. Be sure to check my ratings and nominations to learn why I am the top-rated indoor plant expert. I am the only House Plant expert consistently ranked in the AllExperts Top 20.

Education/Credentials
BA, Amherst College

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