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I have never had this done. I would like to do it for some apple trees that are coming this spring. Any recommendations of what to do or who to use?
 

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Your county conservation office will help you.I believe they send the samples to PSU.I think there is a fee,but well worth it to do it right the first time.
 

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Best soil test I now of is the one done by Mossy Oak's lab. They email the results and they are very understandable. Had PSU do tests some years back, before I knew what N-P-K was and it was like "Greek" to me.

Soil test info is on Mossy Oaks Biologic website.
 

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I picked up information on a soil test at either my County Conservation Office or my Cooperative Extension Office. Not sure which one it was because they are both in the same building. Had to pay a small fee but you are given a plastic bag which you are to fill with soil. The directions I had were to dig a few small samples of soil from various locations where you would be planting and then let the soil dry on newspaper. The soil was then placed in the bag and mailed to an address (I sort of think it was Penn State) along with some paperwork. The paperwork ask what you are planting and where the soil is from. In a few weeks then you get a report in the mail. I agree with "Dutch" that the reports can be a bit confusing to an unexperienced "farmer". The County Conservation Office/Cooperative Extension Office did say when I purchased the soil sample if I had any questions to call or stop in. I was fortunate enough though to find and Food Plot seminar and it advertised that an individual from the County Conservation Office/Cooperative Extension Office would be in attendence. I spoke with this man at the seminar and he was helpful and advised me on how much lime to add to my soil to increase the pH and also what fertilizer I should use. I have heard good things about the "Mossy Oak" soil test program. In my opinion you may be best starting with a local source such as you County Conservation Office/Cooperative Extension Office to obtain information.
Can use this link to find your County Conservation Office:
http://pacd.org/your-district/find-your-district/
Can use this link to find your Cooperative Extension Office:
http://extension.psu.edu/extmap.html
I am thinking it was the Cooperative Extension Office that I got my soil test and information from. They seem to be the ones that are part of Penn State.
Having fun planting and I hope you crops are successful.

-Joe
 

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What is the soil getting tested for? Is the Ph level the only important factor? I see Ph test kits sold at stores that look like a thermometer, would this be sufficient enough for an accurate reading? I am gonna get my soil tested once all this snow finally melts.
 

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Don't bother with the pH kits in the stores.Most are pretty much worthless. Been there, done that.

Go with the Penn State test or the Mossy Oak test.

Mossy Oak is my preference.
 

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I use soil tests through coop extention (NY version, but basically the same). I rely on their field crop guys for extra assistance when neccessary.

One thing to remember is that their reccomendations are based on best economic return. Another words they use the concept of shrinking returns in growth relative to costs of lime, fertilizer and application with heavier applications. In many cases, especially with smaller plots, hunter/managers might be willing to go past those points to get better growth, especially higher protein levels. Just as long as you stay below toxic levels.
 
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