Agricultural Solutions: Critical Testing Parameters for Your Soil

Posted on: 8 January 2018

Regular soil testing can be highly beneficial for your agricultural operation. Therefore, you should collect soil samples from your land and commission an analysis of the material. The results obtained through the testing will help you identify the weaknesses in your soil. Consequently, you will be able to make timely adjustments to promote better growth of your crops. Here are some of the important aspects of your soil that you should have analysed on a regular basis.

Organic Matter

The decomposition of organic matter in the soil ensures the continuous provision of nutrients to the plants on your fields. If the amount of this material declines due to exposure to harsh conditions and general barrenness of the land, your crops will be negatively affected. When you obtain information on your soil, you will be able to make the correct decision for the health of your land. For instance, you can purchase and incorporate suitable organic material to enrich deficient or dying soil.

Soil pH

The pH of your soil refers to the acidity or alkalinity of the material. This aspect of the soil is critical in determining the health of the soil and promoting an environment suitable for plant growth. For instance, most beneficial plants cannot grow in highly acidic or basic soil. The high or low pH will cause the early death of the plants. Ideally, the soil should be close to neutral on the pH scale, leaning slightly to the acidic side due to some nutrients.

Major Nutrients

There are some major nutrients which should be readily available in the soil. You should have this aspect of the soil analysed in a laboratory before proceeding with major agricultural projects. The desired level for these elements and compounds will depend on the potential application of the land. The most common but essential major nutrients include nitrate, sulfur, phosphorous and ammonium. You can also have micronutrients such as iron, copper, manganese and copper assessed.

Soil Texture

The soil texture is an important parameter which helps the analysts to identify the proportions of different particles on the land. In simple terms, the soil texture determines the amount of sand, clay and even silt in your agricultural operation. Sand particles are large and granular, but they do not retain water. Clay soil has small particles which retain too much water. Ideally, agricultural soil should have average particles for optimal drainage.

If you are planning on having your agricultural soil tested, you should discuss your future applications with your chosen laboratory analyst for ideal recommendations.

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Ian's Guide to the Industrial Sector

Hi! My name is Ian and this is my guide to the industrial sector. I do not work in the sector myself but ever since I was a boy, I have loved the idea of seeing heavy industry at work, manufacturing the goods and products our country needs. My passion started when I visited my dad's workplace when I was a boy. My dad worked in a large industrial plant on the outskirts of Perth. I was so impressed at the sound and the large machines and the energy of the place. Although I didn't get a job in the industrial sector, I still take a very keen interest in it.

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