Use of hydrated lime as a calcium source


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We are low income gardeners in Mexico and have blossom end rot problem which is apparently a calcium deficiency. We have some builder's lime which I am told is calcium hydroxide and would like to use that as the calcium source. We can't afford to buy anything else so we need to use that. We have a few questions: 1. do we have to do anything to the lime to make the calcium available, to 'unlock it' so to speak? 2. what amount do we need to apply to correct blossom end rot? 3. do we have to be concerned about PH change and if so how do we compensate for it?
 
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Meadowlark

Gardner, Angler, Adjunct Professor, and Rancher
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East Texas
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8
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United States
Welcome. Be very cautious about applying hydrated lime to your live plants. If applied directly to foliage or to roots, it may burn and destroy them due to its corrosive base properties.

Agricultural lime, just ag lime for short, is a much milder soil additive and source of calcium but it takes time for it to be assimilated into the soil...hence your current tomato plants probably won't see any benefit if applied now.

Do you have any Epsom salts? If so, sprinkle a handful around each plant and water it in. Repeat in a week or so and again, only if necessary. Epsom salts works very rapidly and you should see improvement quickly.
 

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