Most of the world’s agriculture production in the tropics and subtropics are dominated by Oxisols and Ultisols. These soils are generally acidic in reaction. Other impacts of acidic soil to agriculture production reduced plant productivity and nutrient leaching. However, the impacts of acidic soil are variable, and it remains unclear if recent enthusiasm can be justified. This paper is to evaluate impacts of acidic soil to ecosystem responses with a comprehensive and updated review. We found that despite variability introduced by soil and climate, the acidic soil resulted in, reduced crop productivity, crop yield, soil microorganisms, nitrogen (N) nodulation fixation, plant tissue potassium (K) concentration, total soil nitrogen (N), soil phosphorus (P), soil potassium (K), and total soil carbon (C) compared with applied lime conditions. Soil pH also tended to decrease and becoming more acidic, when no lime was applied. This paper provides the review on the impacts of acidic soil on multiple ecosystem functions and suggest that if no preventive action taken, acidic soil could affect the energy, carbon storage, and ecosystem function. However, acidic soil’s impacts on a fourth component, the downstream nontarget environments, remain unknown and present a critical research gap.

Keywords: Acidic soil, pH, plant productivity, soil nutrients, soil microorganisms