A review of the literature reveals conflicting opinions regarding the effects of lime upon the liberation of potassium in soils. The early investigators and most textbooks on soils adhere to the viewpoint that the addition of lime to soils results in the liberation of potassium through chemical reaction. It is believed by some that addition of calcium to soil materially affects the solubility of the potassium from the soil, so much so as to be of considerable practical value under field conditions. According to Jenny, as early as 1847 Liebig pointed out that the addition of lime furnished an invaluable means of liberating from the soil those alkalies that are indispensable to the existence of plants. Hall in 1921 reported that the action of lime upon the potassium compounds in the soil is very marked. The explanation is given that as the water carries down the dissolved calcium bicarbonate, the zeolitic double silicates in the clay are attacked and some of their soluble bases, potassium among them, change place with the lime and go into solution.
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science
©1934 Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.
Dean, Hartzell C.
"Is There a Deficiency of Available Potassium in So-Called Alkali Soils of Iowa?,"
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science, 41(1), 133-137.
Available at: https://scholarworks.uni.edu/pias/vol41/iss1/32