Friday, March 4, 2011

Garden Soil Sample

It's soil testing time.  The Maryland extension service doesn't offer this service anymore, but they give you a lot of information about how and where to have your soil tested.  There's even a video of the man, Jon Traunfeld, digging a sample.

Above is a picture of the soil sample that I took from my backyard garden bed.  I spread it on this paper to dry, then spent two days moving it around to make sure my cats didn't mistake it for litter during a private moment.  I tried to mostly sample the soil underlying the thick layers of compost I added last spring and fall, which were surprisingly unincorporated.  Once it was dry I put it in a baggie and mailed it off.


  1. We dried out a soil sample once and it turned into a rock hard ball. Clay soil sucks!

  2. Yep. I have certain "hiding" places around my house where I toss extra-large clay clumps that I come across as I dig. Luckily some previous owners seem to have done a lot of soil improvement in the flower beds, so I mostly find these when I chart new territory.