Where to get soil sample probe

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by hoofy, Jul 17, 2019.

  1. hoofy

    hoofy Gardener

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2018
    Messages:
    168
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Lancashire
    Ratings:
    +122
    No mention of calcium or sulphur.

    Should I try to raise the pH with lime? The info sheet says ideally it should be around 6.5 for my type of grass.
     
  2. Liz the pot

    Liz the pot Super Gardener

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2015
    Messages:
    786
    Gender:
    Male
    Ratings:
    +955
    What grass type do you have?
    Do you have Poa annua growing in your grass?

    Lime seems to be the in thing at the moment but you need to be careful and the min amount is required.
    If you have Poa annua lime will make that grass love it’s new found home and too much lime results in grass being very poor and increasing the risk of disease.
     
  3. Liz the pot

    Liz the pot Super Gardener

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2015
    Messages:
    786
    Gender:
    Male
    Ratings:
    +955
    When you sent the sample had you applied any fertiliser and had the lawn been watered?
     
  4. Liz the pot

    Liz the pot Super Gardener

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2015
    Messages:
    786
    Gender:
    Male
    Ratings:
    +955
    FC30D7AA-AA9A-4BE5-A0DB-E2396DBE3042.jpeg I’ve included a photo to show you pH and common grass types.
    If say you have fescue and rye then yes 6.5 would be right but if you have AMG then you want it lower to discourage that grass but still keeping the grass healthy.
    If you fed your lawn and in a short span afterwards sent in the sample then unfortunately fertilisers alter short term pH levels as does our good old tap water. That why I asked as you don’t want to apply lime and increase pH levels if the results are not correct for your natural soil content.

    Notice how AGM likes higher pH levels. On fine lawns you want a lower pH level not only to keep the grass at an optimum level but also discourage other grass types.
     
    • Informative Informative x 2
    • hoofy

      hoofy Gardener

      Joined:
      Sep 4, 2018
      Messages:
      168
      Gender:
      Male
      Location:
      Lancashire
      Ratings:
      +122
      Not sure about the poa annua but I do know there was quite a lot of undesirable coarse grass in my lawn when I started 12 months ago. I over seeded last autumn with a regular blend so I'm assuming my grass type is standard mix you get from B&Q.

      When I took the sample the lawn had been fertilised with westland aftercut the week before and the lawn was also pretty wet as I remember struggling to get the probe in and thinking how difficult it would have been if it had been dry.

      The lawn hadn't been watered from the tap.
       
      • Like Like x 1
        Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
      • Liz the pot

        Liz the pot Super Gardener

        Joined:
        Jul 1, 2015
        Messages:
        786
        Gender:
        Male
        Ratings:
        +955
        So knowing that fertilisers do alter the pH we need to ask if lime is required due to the sample. Nitrogen lowers pH as does iron which maybe why you have a lower figure.
        Soil tests are great, sports industry using them a lot but they pick their times if required.
        I would not apply lime, not yet. To gain correct results to insure the fertiliser was not having an influence you would need another sample but let’s take a step back.
        RHS having given advice that covers common found grass types, that’s fine. The other readings look fine but we may have found out why the pH is low.
        How does your grass look?

        We know what symptoms are associated with turf issues if there is a deficiency.

        Low nitrogen, leaves lose colour and turn yellow, poor growth.
        Sulphur, similar to above.
        Phosphorus, dark blue-green leaves with purple along leaf edges (very rare )
        Potassium, leaves droop, interveinal areas turn yellow.
        Calcium, reddish/brown colour along leaf edge which turns to red. Poor root growth.
        Magnesium, similar to Calcuim but it develops on the older leaves.

        So if looking at your grass, it’s nice and green, healthy, good growth, no visual problems then we are doing well.
         
        • Like Like x 1
        • Informative Informative x 1
          Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
        • hoofy

          hoofy Gardener

          Joined:
          Sep 4, 2018
          Messages:
          168
          Gender:
          Male
          Location:
          Lancashire
          Ratings:
          +122
          Lol. Yes, I probably should have taken your advice earlier in the thread when you said it's unnecessary in most domestic situations.

          Still, I enjoyed doing it and gained some experience and knowledge as to what's 6 inches under my lawn. The good news is, the soil looked the same from different areas of my lawn and I didn't hit any rocks.
           
          • Like Like x 1
          • Liz the pot

            Liz the pot Super Gardener

            Joined:
            Jul 1, 2015
            Messages:
            786
            Gender:
            Male
            Ratings:
            +955
            No harm done and you enjoyed discovering what’s there, you can always try again at a later date just to double check.
            It’s just with lime if you apply it it’s on for a few years and it’s not something you can rectify easily but a soil test is the only safe option when lime is required.
             
            • Informative Informative x 1
            Loading...

            Share This Page

            1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
              By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
              Dismiss Notice