Soil Testing & Agriculture

Standard agricultural testing is very limited in what is tested, typically a handful of primary and secondary nutrients, pH, soil type and perhaps cation exchange capacity.

What’s Missing? – the potential to optimize your production!

Typical agricultural soil testing looks at only one aspect of plant health – nutrients. Nutrients are critical, but they are only one leg of a three-legged stool.

What's Missing?

Soil Biology – the second leg

The second leg is Biology. Optimizing productivity and crop quality requires microbes. Microbes do an amazing number of things: nitrogen cycle
  • In the Nitrogen Cycle, bacteria alter nitrogen into more plant plant-available forms, making unavailable nitrogen available, reducing nitrogen costs.

  • Healthy soil has 50,000 protozoa per teaspoon. In this same teaspoon of soil, in a single day, these protozoa:
    • Eat 500 million bacteria.
    • Releasing 400 million molecules of nitrogen!

  • Microbes decompose plant material.

  • Facilitate nutrient uptake, particularly mycorrhizal fungi.

  • Build soil structure.

  • Decrease the need for water.

harvesting50 years ago, I watched flocks of birds follow my father’s plow across the field, gorging themselves on worms, bugs and all of the great living things in the soil.The basis of their food supply was microbes.

It is rare to see birds following a plow today because the soil is DEAD.

A Prescription Soil Analysis advanced test can assist in figuring out if biology needs to go back in. Our Recommendations will tell you how to get it there.

Soil Condition – The Third Leg
hands with soil

The third leg on the stool is soil condition. Why do farmers pay a premium to lease or purchase land with high quality soil? Because it is more productive. It makes more money.

You do not have to be content with second-rate soil. You can change it. How? You begin with a more comprehensive soil analysis.

  • It takes more nutrients to get productivity out of clay soils versus sandy or loam soils. Do you know how much?

  • Do you know how much of your CEC is based on organic matter versus soil type?

  • Do you know how to make compacted soils looser by changing soil structure?

  • Do you know how to get your soil to retain more water or drain better?

  • Do you know how to make your crops more drought resistant?

  • Do you know how to make your crops less likely to “drown” when there is too much water?

Your doctor does not give you a prescription without doing some test, sometimes many tests. Prescription Soil Analysis is an entire battery of tests, looking at 19 different data points.

The goal? – to make your land more productive regardless of what you are growing. The Recommendations are crop specific. You will receive different recommendations for corn, apples and christmas trees. The Recommendations are also listed in priority order, so you know the most important investment to make first.

soy beansIn Summary

The greatest yield, highest quality crops require

  1. Nutrients, including secondaries, micronutrients and trace elements
  2. Soil Biology
  3. The best soil you can create

It all begins with a Prescription Soil Analysis