Gypsum is a natural mineral used as a soil amendment and conditioner for improving overall soil quality. A long-time practice in the agriculture industry, the secret is out on the many benefits gypsum can offer home gardeners and landscape enthusiasts looking to boost their soil’s productivity. This multi-purpose soil amendment provides a variety of soil-saving qualities that improve soil, resulting in more fruitful harvests, healthier plants, and increased production.
- Gypsum Loosens Heavy and Clay Soils
Gypsum aerates soil by helping soil particles to stick together, creating micro-channels within the soil for nutrients, air, and water to move through. This gathering of particles loosens up even the most compact clay soils and also results in enhanced oxygen penetration, as well as water infiltration and drainage.
- Gypsum Helps Leach out Harmful Materials
Because gypsum creates these micro-channels within the soil, harmful materials such as de-icing salts, pet urine, and salt water are able to leach out of the soil more quickly. This is especially valuable in areas where hurricanes or irrigation systems create a salty soil environment. Gypsum will even restore the telltale brown spots along driveways and sidewalks from salt damage.
- Gypsum Adds Calcium
For centuries, gypsum has been used effectively as a way to add calcium to soil without altering soil pH. Calcium is essential in helping plants to create vigorous root systems, as well as to take up the nutrients they need from the soil.
- Gypsum Improves Soil Structure
The ability of gypsum to improve air and water penetration, in combination with added calcium, ultimately yields a significantly improved soil structure. This not only helps plants to better take in necessary nutrients, but it also allows roots and established seeds to spread and grow more freely.
- Gypsum Promotes Efficient Water Management
Compact soils prevent efficient use of water. The enhanced water infiltration and drainage provided by gypsum creates a soil environment that can use water more efficiently, meaning less water needs to be applied, and nutrient runoff is significantly decreased.