FINALLY!! The dirt reports arrived in my email yesterday afternoon!
I’ve been anxiously awaiting the news, checking my email every hour or so for the last week – been afraid to begin sowing inside, just in case the report came back so horribly that they would tell us not to plant anything for a year!
The reports were kind of a shock to me, because last year things seemed to struggle…I was expecting the report to tell us something major was lacking.
Indeed, we are very low in one very key nutrient…
NITROGEN! Which is an EASY PEASY fix! We are super high in everything else, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, boron, sulfur, zinc, manganese, copper, iron.
All three plots were very similar, which was also a bit of a surprise because two years ago we put goat fertilizer on the main area, but apparently, that didn’t change things very much.
Apparently being low on Nitrogen is a thing, and it’s an every year thing, sometimes twice a year thing, so we are not concerned about the issue. The report gave recommendations on what kind of fertilizer to apply – a 20:0:0, they even gave us the recommended does per square foot & 5 different brand names and where to find it.
What’s interesting is last year we noticed it didn’t seem to matter how much we watered the dahlias from the hose, they just never seemed to take off. We weren’t sure it if it was the water, the heat, or the tubers. Once rain fell from the sky, they took off like rockets and were still blooming into the end of October. We’ve been told that water from the sky is totally different than water from the ground, in addition to that, the heat had finally subsided and allowed the dahlias to relax a bit & grow!
The report also told us we are low in organic matter. We knew the soil was dense, denser than I care for, but according to the report it is workable. The soil is a mixture of silt loam, which isn’t the greatest, but not horrible. With low organic matter, there can be an issue with compact soil, resulting in poor drainage. We are considering cover crops for next year, which will help with both the nitrogen level as well as the organic matter composition.
The offical report findings summed up:
The soil contains sufficient potassium and phosphorus for the coming year. If nitrogen has not already been applied this year, choose a nitrogen fertilizer from the options on the first page or equivalent. Nitrogen should be applied annually as a standard practice.
Note: All of the vegetables listed on your form should do fine with the current soil pH.
This is extremely exciting news for us, now we can move forward knowing that our soil will be able to support all the vegtables, pumpkins, gourds and beautiful flowers I hope to grow!
We sent our samples to: