Here are some tips on how to collect a soil sample to get good results when it is tested.
The quality of a test result is greatly influenced by the quality of the sample.
Samples should be collected from:
- The top 10 cm of the soil, this should be accurately measured.
- No portion of the sample should be removed including plant material at the soil surface.
- Sample the area which most represents the paddock
- Collect 250 - 500 grams of soil in total
- Check the requirements with the laboratory testing your sample
- Take at least 15 samples from a transect that can be repeated in the future so the results of future tests can be compared to see how the paddock is progressing
- Place all the samples in a ziplock plastic bag on which you write
- Your name
- Date of sampling
- Paddock id
- Contents (soil to 10cm)
- Crop id
- Test required - see soil testing
Don't take samples from near:
- Animal camps
- Under power lines
- Areas in the paddock that appear different to the bulk of the paddock
- Avoid areas showing the obvious effects of urine and manure
On receipt of the sample the lab will dry the sample then crush and sieve through a 2 mm sieve which removes large organic material and gravel.
We have put together an illustrated paddock sampling example.
If you have any questions about this please contact us and we'll provide assistance.