Time for soil sampling

By SPECIAL TO THE PRESS REGISTER,

 

Spring is on the way and now is the time to get a soil sample.

Follow these tips to make your yard or garden thrive this year.

• Define the area to be tested. Divide the property into three different areas (for example, front yard, back yard, and garden). Each area requires its own soil sample box.

• Gather the supplies you need: soil probe, spade or shovel, plastic bucket, and sample boxes.

• Collect 15–20 different soil plugs from different places in the defined area. Remove vegetation/turf from the ground surface before collecting plugs.

• Take soil from the top 4–6 inches.

• Mix all plugs from a designated area together in a plastic bucket.

• Fill a soil sample box with soil from the bucket.

• If a box is not available, quart-sized zip-top bags are also an option.

• In addition to the other information on the box, remember to label the sample name (for example, front yard, back yard, or garden).

• If you have multiple areas that need sampling, repeat the entire collection process.

• Fill out the Soil Testing Laboratory sample form. Soil sample boxes and forms are at your local county MSU Extension office. Each county in Mississippi has an Extension office, so there is one near you!

• Take the soil sample(s) to your local Extension office or mail them directly to the MSU Soil Testing Lab at P.O. Box 9610, Mississippi State, MS 39762.

• Include payment with your sample ($8 per sample), or pay for samples online.

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