Steps You Need In The Soil Testing Process
Through soil testing, you can save yourself a lot of money. This may sound awkward but you would not like spending your money in buying the wrong fertilizers for your garden or planting the wrong kind of plants. Soil testing may sound intimidating to the average homeowners. There are ways in which you can test your soil easily and conveniently.
You first need to get the correct soil sample boxes. When many people think about soil testing, people generate a lot of ideas in their minds about getting test tubes, vials and decoding of tricky formulas. Soil testing does not involve any of these. You need first to visit your local extension officer. You can search them online or through the yellow pages. Inform them on your intention to test your soil. They will be of value in your soil sampling process. You will be provided with the soil sample boxes, forms that you are to record your data and the instructions that will guide you through the exercise.
You are then to gather the supplies. By now you will start realizing that the process is not as complicated as you thought. Once you are at your premises, gather the necessary tools for the job. The tools that are needed in the exercise are just a spade and a bucket. You have to ensure that you clean them thoroughly using only clean water. They may contain dirt from other locations and the samples will give you wrong results. Do not use any detergents in your cleaning because they contain some compounds which will alter the correct results of your soil samples. Do not also use metal buckets made of steel or bronze. No galvanized metallic bucket should be used neither. They may release some ions which will contaminate the samples.
Once your tools are ready, you can now collect your samples. You should be sure of the location where you should collect the soil samples. If you want a beautiful lawn, you should collect the samples on the front lawn. Do not get the samples at the backyard of the lawn. A very small peripheral can vary the soil.
To save time and the expenses of getting the type of soil at both the back and front or the yard, you can take separate samples. You will have the details on what is needed to improve the two areas for better performance. Use the shovel to scope the soil on an appropriate depth. Put it in the sample box are use appropriate labels to indicate where the sample was taken.
The soil kits are accompanied with some forms. The form indicates the areas that you need your soil tested. It could be the PH of the soil or nutritional requirements. The extension officer also need you to indicate the kind of plants that you have been farming on the area where the sample was taken from and what you intend to grow.
You will then submit the forms and the samples to the local extension officer and wait for a few weeks to get the results. You will be told about the nutrients that your soil lacks and the type of fertilizers to apply.