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CULT: Alkaloid, Alkaline, Alkali

  • Subject: CULT: Alkaloid, Alkaline, Alkali
  • From: "Jeff and Carolyn Walters" <jcwalters@bridgernet.com>
  • Date: Sat, 13 Feb 1999 12:13:07 -0700

From: "Jeff and Carolyn Walters" <jcwalters@bridgernet.com>

> From: "Patricia R. Wenham" 
> Yes, I live about 215 miles from you, Rita.  I live in Cashmere, WA
> (home of Aplets & Cotlets Factory) at the base of Blewett Pass.  My soil
> is alkaloid and there ar areas where the soil is covered with white
> residue and things just refuse to grow without tons of compost, topsoil
> and sulfur being added.  


Actually, when referring to soils with a pH higher than 7.0, the
appropriate term to use is "alkaline". Alkaloids are a class of organic
chemicals, including toxic substances produced by plants to deter grazing
(though they don't always have the desired effect, which becomes apparent
when you list a few examples, such as caffeine, cocaine, morphine, quinine,
and strychnine). The white residue that you observe on the soil surface is
alkali, - salts that are deposited as the soil moisture evaporates. These
do tend to deter plant growth where they occur in concentration.

Jeff Walters in northern Utah  (USDA Zone 4/5, Sunset Zone 2)

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