6 Signs You Need Your Soil Analyzed
Growing plants or grass is a science that requires water, soil, fertilization, and soil testing.Testing soil is the only reliable method of determining the pH. Some soils are naturally acidic, while others are naturally alkaline.
The pH scale measures acidity and alkalinity within 14 divisions. The center is pH 7, which is considered a "neutral" pH. When the number goes lower, the soil becomes more acidic. When the number is higher, it is more alkaline. What is interesting to note is that soil with a pH of 4.0 is 10 times more acidic than soil rated at a pH of 5.0. Despite this, a pH of 4.0 is 100 times more acidic than soil with a pH of 6.0.
Fertilizing plants without knowing the soil pH is a guessing game. You will waste both time and money trying to figure it out. By soil testing, you can easily decide how much lime and fertilizer to apply for your plants to grow strong, or your grass to grow thick.
Why Should You Test Your Soil?
Soil testing is essential because it allows you to know exactly which nutrients are lacking in the soil, and what the pH is. Knowing the pH and nutrient profile determines the best fertilizer or amendment strategy for proper plant growth.
Testing prevents wasting money because it prevents adding too many nutrients to the soil when it is not needed.
6 Signs You Need Your Soil Analyzed
Here are a few key signs that you should have your soil tested.
Healthy root systems equate to healthy plants. If you do not have a healthy root system, it is most likely due to not having healthy soil. When testing the soil you see how much water, air, and fertilizer is within it, this indicates why your plants aren’t growing, and allows you to make a change.
Lack of Moisture
Well-aerated soil is more evaporation resistant. This means that plants are able to utilize the water supply in between waterings. Different regions require different levels of water, and a soil test will give you insight.
It is easy to identify compacted soil because it is hard to touch. Compacted soil restricts water and nutrients and their availability for the plants to adsorb. It also prevents earthworms from moving around in the soil and doing their symbiotic job. If you have compacted soil, yearly aeration may be required.
Moss in Your Garden
Anytime you find moss in your garden you know there is a problem. Moss thrives when the soil is overwatered, doesn’t have enough sunlight or is high in acidity. Changing the nutrient profile and reducing the water, or even improving sunlight will ensure moss does not take over.
Puddles of Water
If you notice puddles of water on your lawn, or in your garden it means that the water is not getting through to the roots or that the soil is saturated. Improper soil drainage can indicate a specific soil type; clay versus sandy or loam soil for example. Knowing the soil type determines what type of soil amendment is needed to change soil adsorption for ideal growing conditions.
Lack of Pollination
Approximately 87.5% of flowering plants use animal-mediated pollination to set seed and fruit. Seed and flower production requires specific nutrient profiles. Testing soil indicates what fertilizer is necessary to ensure optimal pollination.
Where to Get Your Soil Analyzed?
If you are having trouble with your lawn or garden, Dial Environmental can help. We specialize in New Jersey lawn care and can help get your lawn back to the healthy green you’re looking for.
For a free quote on our lawn services, including a free soil inspection, contact our team today!