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Re: Aluminum

On Tue, 28 Nov 2000, Colin Gorton wrote:
> It appears that almost all soils contain large quantities of Al, I may
> be wrong, but that's the way I see it from the soil studies that I've
> seen. I think the important thing is to look at how available that Al
> is, if it's in the form of oxide, then I'd guess that it's pretty well
> inert.

You are right.  Aluminum is one of the most common elements in the crust
It tends to form compounds that are stable under conditions near the
earth's surface and so it concentrates in soils.  Aluminum toxicity is a
problem only when the soil pH is low.

Most laterites have a very high aluminum content.  Despite that, if the pH
of water in the substrate is close to neutral even common laterites (as
opposed to iron laterites) are safe for plants.

Roger Miller