smokemaster's witches brew revisted, as seen by a nerd
Fertilizer containing calcium acetate is expensive. Calcium acetate is easy to make. All you need is calcium carbonate and distilled white vinegar.
I like smokemaster's idea, but I'm too much of a nerd to have a go at a chemical reaction without working out the numbers first. the idea of pouring about an inch of lime in a yogurt container and filling it up with vinegar is very unappealing to me. I gotta do the math. so here we go.
since dolomitic lime is not pure calcium carbonate, for simplicity I bought pure calcium carbonate powder off amazon (for home brewing, etc). and I'm basing my numbers on the goal of getting a pH neutral solution.
The actual chemical reaction is:
2CH3COOH + CaCO3 -----> Ca(CH3COO)2 + H2O + CO2
The molar mass of CaCO3 is 100.0869 g/mol
The molar mass of CH3COOH is 60.05 g/mol
But since the vinegar is already diluted, mass isn't very useful to us. What we're interested in is moles/liter, which for 5% vinegar is roughly 0.87 moles/Liter or 0.87M. From this we get to the more useful number which is 1.14 liters per mole.
From the equation above, you need 2 moles of acetic acid to neutralize 1 mole of CaCO3. So following from that logic for every 100g (1 mole) of calcium carbonate, you need 2.28L (2 moles) of vinegar.
Let's have a bit more fun with this, since not everyone has a digital scale.
Per Wikipedia The density of CaCO3 is 2.83g/cm3. And there's 14.78 cm3/tbsp. following that logic there's 41.84g/tbsp.
so: (41.84g)/(100 g/mol) = 0.418 moles CaCO3
2 x (1.14 L/mole) x 0.418 moles = 954 mL vinegar
So for every tablespoon of CaCO3 you would need 954 mL of vinegar.
The molar mass of calcium acetate is 158.17.
Going with the tablespoon of CaC03 you would get 0.418 moles of calcium acetate, or roughly 66.13 grams.
I did all of this in excel, so I carried all my digits. You can round off as you see fit. I figure if you have a rounded tablespoon of calcium carbonate and about a liter of vinegar, it'll probably work out just fine.
This of course is based on going for a neutral solution to not mess with your soil pH. I just did the math tonight, I intend to try it out this weekend. I have a pH tester so I can see how accurate I was.
please feel free to check my numbers. I figured if I'm gonna sit down and work out the numbers, I might as well post it for others to make use of.