101Smart Ltd.

The importance of soil testing

Don’t under-estimate the importance of testing your soil prior to applying fertiliser.

Both excessive rainfall and warmer temperatures can dramatically alter both the soil chemistry and soil structure. Testing your soil allows you to understand your specific soil status, and to purchase precisely tailored nutrients, improving the chances of profitable crops and forages.

Continued unpredictability in our weather – including extremes of both rainfall, drought and high temperatures, farmers with many challenges, including the changes this makes to soil nutrient availability and health.  Wet weather causes nutrients to move across the soil profile and leach. Soil structure is also altered, impacting root establishment and crop stability. Therefore, it is extremely important to test and re-test your soil and adjust subsequent practices appropriately. Applying only the nutrients required by your soil and crops is key. Not does this reduce the unit cost of production, but it can also improve the sustainability of your operation.

Bill Petrie, Agronomist at Glasson Fertilisers, explains; “Changes in the climate, whether that’s excessive rainfall or soil temperatures can dramatically alter soil chemistry, and therefore soil analyses performed only a few months ago are unlikely to accurately reflect the current soil status. As such, it is important to re-test your soil in order to understand any changes to the nutrient balance. 

“Basing plant nutrition use on your recent soil analysis has many benefits. Not only can it save you money or reduce the unit cost of production, but it can also improve the sustainability of your operation by growing crops with reduced stress. Plants deficient in any of the 14 nutrients required for optimum plant growth can induce disease.”

The team at Glasson Fertilisers are all FACTS-qualified, meaning they can help customers accurately interpret soil analysis results.  From their four UK production sites, they make high-quality fertilisers that can be tailor made to suit your soils and crop.

Find out more at glassongrain.co.uk