Knowing the nutrient profile of your soil can improve the yield of your crop, storage characteristics and plant vigour says Hamilton-based Soil Scientist Dr Gordon Rajendram (PhD).
Ideal for vineyards, orchards and more, horticulture soil testing is done to get an accurate read on the soil quality and nutrient levels. “This supports monitoring fertiliser programmes and helps to recognizing nutrient deficiency or toxicity,” says Dr Gordon Rajendram (PhD).
Ideally soil testing should be completed at the time of establishment, so the correct fertilizer and lime treatment can be applied before planting. However, it’s not too late for already established orchards and vineyards. “Soil testing and sampling works best when used in conjunction with plant testing for correct nutrient management,” advises Gordon.
Soil testing can show you the soil nutrient levels in your soil are high enough to sustain excellent level of plant growth. Through soil testing you can also monitor soil pH and organic matter. It can also help with uniform crop growth, which makes individual plants more competitive with weeds which makes practices such as spraying, simplifying crop harvesting and drying and improving market quality easier.
If you have poor plant growth, little response from the use of fertilizers, difficult weeds, low crop yields, poor quality forages, irregular plant growth in your fields, soil testing can help you discover exactly what is causing these issues and the best ways to correct them. “Soil testing gives you the potential for higher yielding crops, better quality crops and more effective and resourceful fertilizer use,” adds Gordon.
Looking for a better and more efficient way to meet your crop needs and yield goals? Then get The Soil Scientist on the case! Gordon can help all farmers get independent advice to they can get the most out of their soil so that their farm can work more efficiently, be sustainable while improving the farm profitability.
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