Soil Test – Why, When and How
Fred Newcombe
WHY Soil Test 

Ok folks, if you’ve been following along you know that we always start with a…SOIL TEST! Our approach focuses on feeding the soil biology, so the biology can feed the plant. In order to do so efficiently, we need to know what “crop” we are growing and what environment it grows in. A soil test provides your soil chemistry baseline showing what needs to be adjusted to support growing your “crop” in our case – organic turf grass.   

Benefits of Soil Testing: 

  • Chemical analysis of current soil properties:  pH, buffer pH, Organic Matter, Cation Exchange Capacity and Calcium to Magnesium levels.  These metrics all affect how well grass grows. 
  • Informs product choices and application rates to improve and change soil conditions.   See our blog on the importance of calcium in the soil. 
  • Is used as a baseline to set expectations, budget, and independent metrics to improve upon.  
WHEN to Soil test 

A soil test can be taken at any time in the season, but before applying soil amendments and fertilizers – then every 3 years to chart progress.  It’s important that when retesting, you do it at the same time of the year.   


HOW To Soil Test 

We send you sampling supplies: instructions, the sample bags, and submittal form. You dig the dirt using a soil probe, spade or shovel to collect soil from the root zone (4-6 inch depth). Mix the samples in a container (the number of samples depends on property size). Transfer soil to a bag, mix and ship to the independent commercial laboratory we use! We receive the results from the lab and interpret them in view of an All-Natural Organic Turf Care Program.  You receive information in an easy-to-understand format with product recommendations and application rates.  

 Keep in mind a soil test is not an exact science but a snapshot in time that is used to guide product decisions.