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    I really want to know how well-fed fertilizer company bosses are - how much of price is profit margins and how much of it can we just toss up to business expenses?

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      Originally posted by MrSterling View Post

      I really want to know how well-fed fertilizer company bosses are - how much of price is profit margins and how much of it can we just toss up to business expenses?
      Here's a small example - Oyster Shell Powder (aka Flour) comes from a single source, the floor of the San Francisco Bay. This mined material is from ancient sea deposits of a small oyster about the size of your small fingernail.

      Totes (1 c.y. or 27 c.f.) run about $100.00 for singles and down to $70,00 for a truckload (per tote). Fair enough.

      When you buy it bagged at a farm store the price is around $12.00 for 50# bag. Fair enough redux.

      By the time you buy it in a box from Down-To-Earth the price for 6 lbs. is $10.95 MSRP

      So we went from $.04 per lb. (tote price) to $1.30 per lb. (DTE box price).

      And then there's the eBay sellers - who knows what they're charging.

      Then factor in what the price per lb. is when you look at Calcium supplements for you and your family. Which is nothing to compare with the price once it's put into a bottle for the pet supplement industry.

      Yeah - big money indeed and that's just an example on a dirt cheap commodity

      CC

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        Originally posted by SeaMaiden View Post
        As for whether they're locked up, that would be my practical experience, yes. Whether it's trying to get Ca into photosynthetic hermatypics or into my tomatoes, if it's only form is CaCO3, nobody gets enough and it needs supplementation.
        That's the key right there. It's certainly worth getting the well water tested in the new house. I'll look around and see if CaCO3 is disassembled in soil somehow. If not, then I'm not building up Ca+, assuming my water Ca+ is CaCO3. Thanks much for the feedback.

        Originally posted by ClackamasCootz View Post
        rrog

        I'm supposed to ask you if the water softener chemical you're using is Potassium Chloride

        Let me know......

        BTW - are you growing coral or maintaining a reef system in your home?
        CC, again, thanks for your efforts. I use a NaCL based softening salt, so the resulting softened water has reduced Ca+, Mg+ and Fe+, while elevated Na+. The KCl you mentioned is $$, but if the resulting softened water with elevated K+ instead on Na+ would prove safe for the plants, it might be worth it.

        IF I have CaCO3 as a Ca+ source in native well water, and IF CaCO3 is indeed locked up, then I'd continue to use the well water
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          Rrog, I want to clarify that, while I am also on a well, and while I know the basic parameters with specific regard to both general and carbonate hardness, I do not know the exact parameters; i.e. how much of what is in the water. It stains our porcelain orange, so I would guess that means I have at least a little Fe in there. I've tested general and carbonate hardness levels myself, but not with kits that are element or mineral-specific.

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            Most carbonates (including Calcium Carbonate) are not water soluble - basic chemistry and the Laws of Solubility.....

            Just trying to bring this back around to science and such

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              More good news, then. So some of the concerns about hard water seem invalid in some cases. Unless carbonates behave differently in soil than in straight water
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                Originally posted by ClackamasCootz View Post
                Most carbonates (including Calcium Carbonate) are not water soluble - basic chemistry and the Laws of Solubility.....

                Just trying to bring this back around to science and such
                but arnt humic substances capable of taking out some of the cal and mag ions that would make water "hard"?

                peat has a softening effect in water?

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                  rrog

                  Calcium Carbonate (CaCO3) for example, is deconstructed when it comes in to contact with Sulphuric acid thereby releasing the Ca++ from the Carbon and Oxygen ions.

                  Soils low in Sulphur will often suffer from 'Calcium' lockout and a good example of that in the gardening world is Coir. Coir is almost completely free from elemental Sulfur meaning that Calcium++ is not available from Limestone, Calcite Lime, Oyster shell powder, etc.

                  Ever see any threads on Coir boards about Calcium lockout? LOL

                  Think that they would ever dig deep enough into soil science to figure out that adding more elemental Calcium locked in a double-ring with Magnesium Carbonate (Dolomite Lime) is a fool's errand?

                  CC

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                    If the water hardness is CaCO3 you can make it available in water by acidifying the water. For example if you use nitric acid the reaction would be:

                    CaCO3 + 2HNO3 = Ca(NO3)2 + H2O + CO2

                    by the time you lower the pH to 4.5 it all would become available. So if you don't want that free Ca leave your water pH above 7

                    sorry about that...can't help myself sometimes

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                      Originally posted by DARC MIND View Post
                      but arnt humic substances capable of taking out some of the cal and mag ions that would make water "hard"?

                      peat has a softening effect in water?
                      Humic substances and clay will hold Calcium++ ions where they can be exchanged with other cations for uptake by the roots.

                      That's how humic substances and clay play the role that they do in maintaining the pH (too many free Hydrogen ions without a home to land at)

                      CC

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                        word
                        mineral rich compost and or casting is king!

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                          Acidic solutions release the Ca+. Got it. Interesting, in that on another water hardness thread here, it was recommended to acidify the water to keep the problem from building. In fact, it seems the opposite is the case.
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                            Originally posted by DARC MIND View Post

                            mineral rich compost and or casting is king!
                            That's what it always comes down to - quality humus.

                            Trying to amend one's way to a successful garden is basically an attempt to apply the concepts of hydroponics to soil.

                            Pointless as usual......

                            Comment


                              Originally posted by rrog View Post

                              Acidic solutions release the Ca+. Got it. Interesting, in that on another water hardness thread here, it was recommended to acidify the water to keep the problem from building. In fact, it seems the opposite is the case.
                              Correct and that's but a small role that Sulfur plays in the soil chemistry when it's converted to Sulphuric acid.

                              See how easy that was? LOL

                              CC

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                                This is all extremely cool!
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