When you are trying to grow an immaculate lawn or garden, the first place to look is at the soil. Many people will simply look at how dark or soft it is and figure it is fertile soil. It is important to know what is in your soil before you start planting as it can save you from problems in the future. Here are some things you should be checking when you test your soil.

Nutrient Content

If you see a lot of organic matter in your soil, there is a good chance that there will also be a lot of nutrients as well. When you test the soil, you will be able to find out if there is an excess of nitrogen or if there is enough phosphorus in the soil to keep your grass healthy and green throughout the summer.

Alkaline levelsSoil Testing

Checking your soil acidity is paramount! If you don’t do this, you may find that your grass is dying because you are either way below the preferred pH level or way above. The pH level can also directly affect how many nutrients are available in the soil. Maintaining the right balance for your plants is the best way to start!

How to Test your Soil

Testing your soil is simple. All you need to do is get a tube for sampling and dig in about 4-6 inches. You then get about a pint of the inner soil and let it dry out before sending it to your local extension office. For a $10 fee, you can have the soil tested in the lab and receive an extensive report of what the soil is like.

Make sure you start your lawn and garden right by knowing your soil before you jump headlong into problems. It will save you time and money in the end!

Photo Credit: bschwehn