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Recommend a soil probe?


LawnSite Member
I am not a professional and I know this can be done with a small shovel, but I am going to be assisting in maintaining the lawn care of several properties. I would prefer to make make job a little easier. Are there inexpensive probes under $20? I found some at lesco for 17" $27.58 and 21" $32.32. What size do I need and can they be purchased at local hardware stores/nursery? Thanks for the help!!

Dreams To Designs

LawnSite Bronze Member
Don't know of a soil probe that cheap, but AM Leonard sells excellent quality stainless steel for a reasonable price. This is one of the styles they carry. It is really nice as you can get it into almost any soil to take a sample.


They have others, use the search feature or get a copy of their catalog. The stainless is nice because it will not contaminate your samples for soil testing.

There are soil probes and soil profilers. The main difference is in the shape.
Probes generally are round and the profilers are flat.
Probes you can use just about anywhere, a soil profiler is used typically for putting green roots examination and other empirical programs where more detail on root composition is needed over that which is provided by a probe.
That being said, I recommend that you obtain the absolute largest diameter probe you can find - at least 1" in diameter.
Why? Because they are easier to use, easier to view the core, easier to sharpen and are typically large enough you won't have one go missing in your truck.
There are certain tools that price really should have no impact upon, one is a good soil emoscope, a good soil thermometer, and a good soil probe.
Just get the biggest one you can find from Lesco and be done with it.


LawnSite Member
Why do I need a large one (17", 21" or 36") when my local county extension only requires a 6" to 7" deep sampling?
Okay, let me ask this - do you want to bend over 6" or a foot?
Plus leverage to shove that skinny, flexible probe with a really narrow observation window, into the soil?
I have utilized all kinds of soil probes over the years, trust me - you want the biggest mambajamba you can get your sweaty palms on.