Soil is one of the most important assets for a farmer, and there is a wide variety of types, each one with its own properties and each with a more suitable kind of crops. No matter what kind it is needs to be as healthy as possible for a successful production. That’s why farmers need to take a look at how to improve its quality, which is only possible through soil analysis.
Soil analysis, a must for any farm
Soil analysis should be a must in any farm since it gives essential information for quality improvement, ranging from the nutrients to the pH level of the soil. This type of information helps farmers adjust fertilization and facilitates crop management. Knowing the exact pH levels is important since it influences the uptake of soil nutrients from the crops and it gives an inside on the level of acidity, which should be kept at a minimum to the point where there aren’t any toxic metals that the crops can be exposed with.
When should you perform soil analysis?
The recommendation to maintaining a quality and balanced soil is to perform studies on it as often as possible, with some experts recommending a frequency of 3 to 5 years. Different variables can affect this number, such as the activity level the soil is subjected with. If your farm grows annual crops in rotations, it’s best to perform soil analysis every third rotation.
Another aspect to take into account is the best time of the year to make the analysis, which can vary. In the case of annual crops, sampling and analysis is best done after the harvest, since it gives the farmer plenty of time to plan fertilization management. On the other hand, for perennial crops the best time to do it is during the dormancy stage.
The financial factor can also determine how and when a farmer is able to perform soil analysis. Only you can make a decision when it comes to your personal situation, but rather than seeing this as an expense, consider it an investment to keep your farm and your production in the best shape. Once you’ve gathered the results of a soil analysis study, make sure to work on a plan to implement any required changes, or else your investment could’ve been made in vain.