This is the article that discusses the soil analysis types funded by the PGA (Professional Golf Association) and describes why we need to use an alternative soil analysis type to understand Calcareous soils. Don't get confused by this term, this could easily be many of you that have used oyster shell, dolomite, calcium carbonate, rock dusts, etc. etc.. Having these materials plus neutral or high pH water, or with any water problems, does not permit short term utilization of these calcium sources. If one does not understand why it is so important to understand what is really in your mixes, this will help you understand.
Alkaline materials with alkaline waters will take forever to become available, this is why so many are showing higher Ca than Albrecht called for, yet seeting Ca problems.
On the other extreme, I do not agree with the concept of using any other procedure than M3 for the rest of the analysis. Let me explain why.
If I did the job that I needed to do in maximizing to my best understanding, the multiplication of my root tips, this would give me the highest natural manufacture of both cytokinin growth hormone which is responsible for cell division and calcium uptake sites (root tips) that will maximize my calcium uptake.
To achieve this high level of root tip growth, I really need know what the level of nutrients that would be available in an acid soil, regardless of whether I am in an alkaline soil or not. This is because roots exude amino acids which have a very low pH of 3.5 to 4.5. If roots can create this acidity, I want to know what is really in the best of situations, available to the plant under that pH level that is exuded by a good healthy root. That analysis we all know is Melich 3 (M3).
If we are going to balance the soil, it must be done on the basis of knowing what is available at this pH, not at AA@8.2..... All accept for Calcium. We need that AA@8.2 Ca number to really dial it in. This shows us the real Calcium issue in the soil, the difference between the two, M3 and AA@8.2 being forms of Calcium that we cannot depend on to get to the plant, yet will give us false readings at the lab.
This is my contribution to soil science, taking the pieces of the puzzle and trying to make a real and up to date working system improving and building on what our forefathers learned. That reflects what we see in leaf analysis and at the same time achieves not only high yields, but also the highest of quality.
Thanks to the PGA for contributing to this very critical piece of the puzzle....