Soil test results = ?

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by NewHorizon's Land, Jan 30, 2008.

  1. NewHorizon's Land

    NewHorizon's Land LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 687

    Test A
    Organic Matter = 2.0%
    P 48 ppm (Medium)
    K 131 ppm (High)
    Mg 136 ppm (High)
    Ca 571 ppm (Medium)
    pH 5.7
    C.E.C. 5.5 meq/100g

    Test B
    Organic Matter = 2.9%
    P 37 ppm (Medium)
    K 111 ppm (High)
    Mg 104 ppm (Medium)
    Ca 730 ppm (Medium)
    pH 5.9
    C.E.C. 5.8 meq/100g

    Both customers want greener, less weedy grass.
    Both have high amounts of clover mixed in with grass (need to apply nitrogen).
    Both want to be reseeded (drilled in ground), aerated asap but no later than spring time (dormant seeding possible?)

    I want to go organic on these lawns. I have a corn gluten meal fert, espoma fert, and various types of compost available plus strong backs and any tools I do not have I can rent.

    What do I need to do to these properties? Please give me your recommendations.
  2. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,334

    1) Where is the N result in your soil test?
    2) Would help to know levels of the major minors (couldn't resist)
    3) Define your weeds?

    Given the information provided, my suggestion would be to get your OM% up to somewhere around 5-6% in the top 4-6" of your soil profile. The majors listed seem to be within acceptable ranges, increasing the OM% will help stabilize. Wait until spring when growth has resumed and soil moisture levels are not saturated before doing anything.

    This is a modification of Bill's recommended program that we discussed in another thread (modification/changes/suggestions are welcome as usual). :)

    1) Soil Test and/or Bio-Assay

    ---wait for results---

    1) Core Aerate. If cores are too wet to breakup easily, go to next job.
    2) Dethatch/verti-mow/power rake if required (power raking helps break up the cores)
    3) Address deficiencies noted in soil tests
    4) Spread a good finished compost over area (~ 1/4-1/2")
    5) Spray compost teas (optional if applying a compost with good biology present)
    6) Rake out compost to get into core holes

    7) Check irrigation for damage and/or adjustment issues from coring/verti-mowing (if applicable)
    8) Irrigate (if applicable)

    ---if irrigated, call it a day or proceed to next job---

    1) Over seed
    2) Top dress with a good finished compost

    3) Verify irrigation schedule is set properly for establishing seed and irrigate (if applicable)

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