Caliche – Not the Rockstar of the Plant World

Caliche - Tucson Landscaper

 In Tucson, tadalafil there are areas where it is nearly impossible to dig a hole to plant a tree.  Those of us who have lived in Tucson for awhile know that this is caused by caliche.  Caliche is made up of layers of lime that can be a few inches thick or a few feet thick.  It’s so hard that you often need a digging bar (aka caliche bar) or maybe even a jackhammer to get through this hard layer of rock.

If this is in your soil, viagra usa  it can cause three main problems.

  1. It keeps roots from penetrating the soil.
  2. It keeps water from draining away from the plant roots.
  3. It can cause an iron deficiency in plants.

What is the solution?

There is no way to get rid of caliche if it’s in your soil.  But, there are ways to help your plants live with it.

Planting a wide enough hole for the mature size of the plant’s roots to extend out is extremely important.  This will help because the roots of the plant probably won’t be able to extend out any further than the hole you originally dig.

Remove the caliche from the hole you’ve dug and replace it with an amended soil that will help your plant grow.

If the drainage is bad, create a chimney to allow excess water to drain away from your plant.

Always use native desert plants when planting in caliche.  They are much better adapted to survive in caliche than other plants.

Caliche Planting - Tucson Landscaper

 

 

Did you know that caliche is used in manufacturing Portland cement?  It’s nice to know there is something good that caliche can be used for.  For more information about caliche and planting hole dimensions check out the University of Arizona’s article about it.

Deborah Munoz-Chacon

Sonoran Oasis Landscaping

 


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27 Comments

  1. Very interesting – I have lived in Wisconsin all my life. We have black dirt – totally not like the soil in your area.

    Reply
    • I love going to other places and seeing the different plants. Different areas have different soils. It’s always interesting to see the differences.

      Reply
  2. We are extremely rocky here and these are some great tips!

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  3. In our backyard, our soil is literally only 3 inches deep, then it’s a bed of rock!~

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    • You see that often. Sometimes if you dig past the rock you find soil again.

      Reply
  4. Wow this looks like a tough problem to deal with! Thanks for the tips for this!

    Reply
  5. Very informative post! It’s interesting to know that different climates have very different soils and planting methods.

    Reply
    • Different soils have different planting requirements.

      Reply
  6. I had no idea that caliche was used in Portland cement..I guess it is technically a part of my porch now!

    Reply
    • If they used Portland Cement then yes Amy.

      Reply
  7. I see why it requires a jackhammer sometimes if it’s used as cement. Wow!!! That would be a hassle to work with when landscaping for sure!

    Reply
  8. wow, it’s used in cement? no wonder trees struggle!! the chimney option seems viable. what a nightmare to dig tho!!!

    Reply
    • Yes, Brett. We’ve had to use a jackhammer to dig holes. It’s no fun.

      Reply
  9. I have never heard of this before. Thanks for the valuable information.

    Reply
  10. This sounds like a really cool plant!

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    • Thanks Laurie. Yes, we have the same problem in Arizona.

      Reply
  11. My Mom lives in Texas and they have a lot of Caliche. She fights it in the garden all of the time! I agree with you, glad to know it is good for something.

    Reply
  12. I never knew this! Thanks!

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  13. I don’t have a house yet, so at least i don’t need to think of this yet.

    Reply
  14. Wow, great information. I didn’t know any of this. Although I’m horrible at this stuff anyway but still good to know.

    Reply
  15. Oh, I hate that you guys have to deal with this. I live in NC and I am not sure if we have anything like this, but if we do, I haven’t dealt with it. Our trees are generally really easy to plant and grow well.

    Reply
  16. Interesting! I’ve never heard of caliche until reading your post.

    Reply
  17. Wow! I had no idea that warm, dry climate areas like Texas and Arizona had this in the soil. I’ve always been incredibly jealous of the long growing season in these areas! Living in northern New England, we can always did holes, but they are always filled with rocks (which is easy enough to remove). It is good to know Caliche is good for something!

    Reply
  18. We are going to be doing a lot of landscaping next spring. This will come in handy!

    Reply

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