The pH value of Alginit reaches a very weak alkaline value. When measured in a 25 ml 0,01 M CaCl2 solution, the pH is 7,6. Its moderate alkalinity has a favourable effect on the amelioration of acid soil. The application of Alginit in alkaline soils does not increase the pH value.
The carbonate content (CaCO3) of Alginit exceeds up to 22 %. The limestone particles are very fine, readily soluble and thus extremely fast acting.
The soil texture of Alginit proves a particle size distribution of 54 % clay, 40 % silt and less than 6 % sand. According to the German classification (AG Boden 2005) it corresponds to the soil texture “slightly silty clay”. The X-ray diffraction identified a smectit content of 50 % and an illit content of 40 % in the clay fraction, which explains the great ability to hold water and nutrients.
Furthermore Alginit contains 10% of Vermiculite/Chlorite and most of the macro- and micro nutrients that are necessary for a complex amelioration and conditioning of the soil as well as for the development of plants.
Alginit contains the following primary constituents:
Alginit can absorb and hold far more then half of it’s own weight, without seepage or evaporation. In fact 1 t of Alginit is able to store at least 630 l water of which 410 l are in any case plant available. Once stored, this water remains available to supply plants with sufficient quantities of water, allowing them to withstand periods of drought. The cycle of water retention and release can occur repeatedly and eternally.
Alginit`s high organic matter content amounts up to 19 %. This fact raises the original organic matter in sandy soils and has favourable effects on hydrology and soil structure. It also increases the storage capacity for a long-term supply of nutrients. Furthermore, Alginit contains most of the macro- and microelements necessary for achieving optimum, balanced soil conditions.
Alginit contains volcanic rock that enriches the soil with minerals and trace elements which are constantly being absorbed by plants. Its fossilized algae biomass considerably increases soil fertility.
The high clay and organic matter content of Alginit leads to a very high cation exchange capacity (35 cmol kg-1). This, in term, results in the ability to increase the storage capacity of nutrients and prevents leaching.
The average cation exchange capacity of sandy soils is 2 cmol kg-1. Applying Alginit to such kind of soils contributes significantly to cost reduction in terms of personal, agriculture machinery operations and fertilisers.
Due to the increase of the cation exchange capacity of the soil, pollutions like heavy metals can be immobilized. Thus, heavy metals neither migrate into groundwater nor can they be absorbed by plants. The bond of heavy metals only slightly reduced the cation exchange capacity.