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OrangeToys
02-26-2010, 12:55 AM
Does anyone do soil test? and how do you do them (send them off, do it yourself)?

greendoctor
02-26-2010, 01:57 AM
I do. New accounts with old landscaping and already established lawn. I want to know what is there, what is missing and what is in excess. Common problem is too much phosphorus and pH way off.

My samples go to A & L Laboratories, Modesto, California. Simple process. One pint of dry soil goes into a plastic bag. I do not handle the sample with bare hands at any time, the sampling is done with a stainless steel garden trowel that is only used for this purpose. My Agrium dealer is the rep for that lab. $35 and 10 business days later, I have answers. Good answers to comments like "I/the gardeners did apply fertilizer, but not much happened".

OrangeToys
02-26-2010, 03:04 PM
can you post a pic of your tool?

Kiril
02-26-2010, 03:20 PM
http://www.lawnsite.com/showpost.php?p=2619935&postcount=7

And I second the A & L Laboratories (http://www.allabs.com/index.htm) recommendation.

DiyDave
02-26-2010, 03:37 PM
can you post a pic of your tool?

I can, but this is not the time, or place, LOL. Go to gemplers.com, they have about 20 different types of soil test probes. If you don't have the $, you can make one out of a core aerator tooth, attached to a wooden or steel handle.

White Gardens
02-26-2010, 04:09 PM
I push my clients into doing soil tests whenever possible. I like to know what is exactly going on.

We have a lab 45 minutes away and I just take them there whenever I need to.

greendoctor
02-27-2010, 02:08 AM
What I charge per month of lawn and landscape care more than covers the cost of a soil test. People here do not take well to being nickel and dimed over things. My position on soil testing sets me apart from others in the business. They make a real big deal out of it and soak the customer over it. Soil tests are part of the service.