To have a healthy, beautiful lawn, you need to start with fertile soil. Good soil retains water, releases nutrients for plants and grass, and drains properly. Your lawn’s soil requires adequate nutrients, optimal pH levels, and organic matter to be fertile. Guessing your way through the process means too little or too much fertilizer, resulting in unhealthy plants and damaging water sources. A soil test is essential for determining what is in your soil and lets you know how to improve your soil’s health. Let’s go over the importance of soil testing.
What is Soil Testing?
Soil tests provide a detailed analysis of your soil’s pH and the essential nutrients needed for soil, including potassium, magnesium, phosphorous, calcium, iron, and manganese. Testing your soil reveals what nutrients your lawn and plants need to grow and recommends which fertilizer to add to your soil. This also saves you from wasting time and money on the wrong kind of fertilizer. Several soil samples are taken from approximately six inches deep and from different spots on your lawn for a soil test.
Why is pH Important?
Your soil’s pH levels affect the available nutrients for your plants. Determining what your plants need is vital to applying the proper nutrients to grow healthy and strong. Testing the pH of your soil will tell you what plants are best suited for that area. Sometimes your soil needs supplements, like fertilizers and soil pH adjusters, for plants to thrive. Measuring the pH can help you figure out what and how much you need.
Identifying Nutrient Deficiencies
Sometimes it is difficult to recognize if your plants are starving or suffering from nutrient deficiency. Eventually, they will succumb to stunted growth, fading color and vibrancy, and even dead plants. Soil analysis helps you identify nutrient deficiency before it gets too bad and informs you of the current health of your lawn. For example, too much nitrogen can damage roots or acidify the soil. While nitrogen deficiencies cause yellowing of leaves or slow plant growth. Phosphorus deficiencies slow plant growth, compromise flower production, and causes discoloration in older leaves. Lastly, a lack of potassium in the soil adversely affects stem strength, disease sensitivity, and the taste or quality of fruits and vegetables.
Soil Testing Prevents Fertilizer Waste
Adding fertilizer to your lawn without knowing what nutrients are in your soil, leads to over-fertilization, fertilizer burn, and increased risk of soil erosion. Knowing the exact chemical composition of your soil will help determine the quantity and type of fertilizer necessary. Too many nutrients cause an imbalance leading to runoff and water contamination, but too little will starve your plants. Testing your soil before fertilizing prevents over-fertilization, reduces chemicals leaking into water sources and protects the environment!
On The Green, Inc. Lawn Care is Here for You!
On The Green, Inc. was established back in 1994. We started as a small business that served the local area. In the decades since, we’ve expanded tremendously. Incorporated in 1997, our brand has become renowned throughout the state of Maryland. Email us at [email protected], call us at 410-695-0444, and find us at our street address: 777 Annapolis Road, Gambrills, Maryland 21054. Grow with us on Facebook and Google!