How To Make Your Garden’s Soil More Acidic

Regardless of what type of plants you are growing, you must get into the habit of monitoring the soil’s pH levels on a regular basis. Allowing your garden to become too alkaline or acidic can have devastating consequences to the health of your plants. But how exactly do you lower the pH of a garden so it’s more acidic?

Testing Your Garden’s pH Levels

Testing pH levels is a quick and easy process that should only take a couple of minutes. Most home improvement stores and plant nurseries sell reusable and disposable testing kits. In addition to revealing the pH level of your soil, these kits often reveal nutrient levels as well.

Follow these steps to produce an accurate pH level reading:
1.Clean a small hand shovel or similar digging tool to eliminate the chance of it contaminating your pH reading.
2.Dig half a dozen or so holes, 5-8 inches each.
3.Pull a small portion of soil from the bottom of each hole and place them inside a bucket.
4.Mix the soil samples together and pull about a pint to use in conjunction with your pH testing kit.
5.Apply the testing kit to the soil and it should reveal a pH reading in just minutes.

Coffee Grounds

No, you don’t have to purchase expensive chemical-based fertilizer to make your soil more acidic. If you’re struggling to lower the pH down to a “normal” level, try sprinkling some spent coffee grounds over the top layer of the soil.

Coffee is naturally acidic and makes a wonderful, nutrient-rich organic fertilizer for the garden. As it breaks down, it releases nitrogen, antioxidants and other nutrients into the soil, promoting healthy plant growth and development.

Diluted Apple Cider Vinegar

Another incredibly easy way to make your garden’s soil more acidic is to add diluted apple cider vinegar. Much like coffee, vinegar is naturally acidic; therefore, it’s the perfect tool for the job. Simply dilute roughly 1 cup of APV to 1 gallon of water and spray/pour it throughout your garden.

It’s best to add a very small amount of diluted ACV followed by performing another pH level test to see how much it changed. APV is powerful stuff, and adding too much can throw your soil well beyond the healthy range for most plants. If your soil still doesn’t have the appropriate amount of acidity, pour a little bit more.