ANALYSIS – Soil Analysis

Soil Analysis

Soil analysis is often used for determining whether the nutrient salts in the ground, soil, earth etc. are at an acceptable level for reuse. Reuse is not advisable if certain soil values are too high, as this often makes it very difficult for plants to develop well. Sodium levels of > 3.0 mmol/l are also undesirable. If levels are too high, the sodium starts to push away other positively charged ions, such as calcium and magnesium, which means that the plant can no longer absorb them. This results in an excess of sodium, creating a deficiency of calcium and/or magnesium.

Soil analysis (for ground, earth, coco, etc.) involves analysis of the following values.

Acidity

pH

EC – Electrical Conductivity

mS/cm 25°C

 

 

Cations – mmol/l

 

Ammonium

NH4+

Potassium

K+

Sodium

Na+

Calcium

Ca+

Magnesium

Mg+

Silicon

Si+

 

 

Anions – mmol/l

 

Nitrate

NO3

Chloride

Cl

Sulphur

S

Bicarbonate

HCO3

Phosphorus

P

 

 

Trace elements µmol/l

 

Iron

Fe

Manganese

Mn

Zinc

Zn

Boron

B

Copper

Cu

Molybdenum

Mo

 

 

A 600-g sample of the ground, earth or coco is required for the analysis. Ensure that the sample submitted is a good mix of the soil for analysis. In other words, make sure that it represents a good average of the open ground, pots or other substrate to be analysed. Preferably, take several samples from the plot, land or the different pots using a core sampler, reaching the whole depth of the soil, and then mix to create one single soil sample.

Submit the sample in a plastic bag. Make sure that you label the soil sample, giving it a name such as ‘greenhouse 4’, ‘west-facing garden’ or the name of the plot. We will add a number code to the sample. Both the name and the number code will then be stated on the analysis results you receive.

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