Be the Change for Clean Water

Know Your Soil Message Toolkit

Short Text

Soil tests are the key to the start of healthy soil. Knowing your nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium, and magnesium levels take the guesswork out of buying fertilizers, chemicals, and other soil amendments. Getting a soil test is easy and provides you with useful information about your soil such as pH, organic matter, available phosphorus, and much more. Recommendations on proper fertilizer use can be made on the results. If you want more information on how to obtain a soil test:

1.Reach out to your local Soil and Water Conservation District.
2. Consult with your local Ohio State University Extension office.

Article Text

When we get a yearly checkup, the doctor always encourages us to adopt healthier habits. Did you ever consider that you can adopt healthier habits for your soil too? We need our soil to be healthy because healthy soil is the key to meeting the growing demands for food, feed, fiber, and fuel around the world. Estimates are that the earth will need to support nine billion people by 2050! How do we get our soil to be healthy? Soil test! Soil testing is an easy and relatively inexpensive planning tool. What are you growing and what nutrients are needed for the best production? A soil test reveals the current status of your soil and provides data essential to smart decision making. Applying too much or the wrong kinds of fertilizers can harm your crop, squander your hard-earned money, and waste your time and energy. Overapplication of soil amendments can result in runoff and leaching of fertilizers into our streams, rivers, and lakes or into our groundwater.

Here are some excellent resources to help you know your soil:

How to take a soil sample 
Soil Sampling to Develop Nutrient Recommendations
Soil Testing for Ohio Lawns, Landscapes, Fruit Crops, and Vegetable Gardens 
Interpreting a Soil Test Report 
Tri-State Fertilizer Recommendations for Corn, Soybeans, Wheat, and Alfalfa 

Taking care of your soil is the foundation for the future, paying big dividends over time. Soil testing provides a basis for sound land management decisions and protects our local water resources. You can be the change for clean water. Know your soil. Don’t guess, soil test.