A soil test is useful to determine fertility or the expected growth potential of the soil and reveals the nutrient availability, potential toxicities from excessive use of fertilizers and inhibitions from the presence of non-essential trace minerals.
Healthy soil equals healthy plants. Identification of soil nutrients helps to improve productivity and to optimize use of fertilizer by indicating appropriate rates for different soils and crops and supports to protect the environment by preventing over fertilization.
Objective and usefulness of soil testing
- To understand what is in your soil.
- To evaluate the fertility status of the soil and interpret its suitability for different crops.
- To increase productivity by identifying soil nutrient deficiency that is limiting plant growth and preventing over fertilization by building a nutrient management plan to save money.
- To identify polluted or contaminated soil.
- To predict crop response to added nutrients.
- To improve the nutritional balance of the growing media and to save money and conserve energy by applying only the amount of fertilizer needed.