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Everything you need to know about soil sampling

Everything you need to know about soil sampling

Soil testing is am analysis performed to identify the fertility of the soil, concentration of plant nutrients, and more. This helps farmers or agronomic owners to determine the fertilizer best fit for the crop need. Other soil tests are done for analysis purposes; for geotechnical, ecological or geochemical, investigations in agriculture.

The area of soil could be a large field, a small garden at the back of the house, or simply a tree or root zone. In soil testing, the most difficult step is to precisely represent the desired soil area. An area can be improved if the represented area is defined.

It takes more than a year for the soil test rate to improve in most soils. Subsequent plants or crop growth will show increasing rates of improvement with improved fertility treatment. Soils are formed as a result of decaying for more than thousands of years, and because of this reason, the change may not become visible instantly.

Benefits of Soil Sampling

Soil sampling is a significant guide to the usage of fertilizer and lime for profit. To promote the use of soil sampling is in the best interest of professional farmers, consultants, and fertilizer suppliers. They can achieve the following things by promoting this practice.

  1. Production of premium quality crops
  2. Higher crop yield
  3. Choose fertilizers efficiently.

It helps the farmers determine if the soil has the right pH and plant nutrients to grow well. Spending your time to check the soil may help you choose what necessary changes should be made to the soil in order to grow healthier crops, and also prevent from making unnecessary amendments. Routine testing of soil can help you determine if your nutrients and organic matter are steadily diminishing or gathering. Further advantages include identifying the factor that is causing hindrance in the plant growth, increase the efficacy of the fertilizer use, identifies contaminated soil, etc.

Testing of soil samples

Soil testing is often carried out by commercial or local laboratories that provide various tests, targeting mineral and compound groupings. The benefits of the local lab are that they are acquainted with the soil chemistry of the region where the sample has been taken. It helps technicians to prescribe the tests most likely to reveal useful information about the soil nutrients needs.

In laboratory tests, plant nutrients are often checked in three categories:

  1. Major Nutrient (Phosphorus, Nitrogen, Potassium)
  2. Secondary Nutrients (Magnesium, Sulfur, Calcium)
  3. Minor Nutrients (Copper, Iron, Boron, Zinc, Chlorine, Molybdenum)

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