Soil Testers That Give % Readings

bobvisaaaJuly 18, 2014

I am looking for a soil tester that will give me the percentages of NPK thats in my compost. I would like to spend less than $100 for it. Is this possible?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nil13(z21 L.A., CA (Mt. Washington))

For under $100? Not a snowball's chance in hell.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 11:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

There are any number of soil testers that cost less than $100.00 and give readings in percent, but whether they are any good is the question. Few are reliable enough to be of much use, and most all of them rely on an electric current to determine soil chemicals.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2014 at 6:36AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It looks like I am not really going to find an inexpensive way to get NPK readings by doing my own soil test, can anyone recommend a soil testing laboratory I could use?

    Bookmark   July 19, 2014 at 7:31AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Where are you? Each states university that has an Ag school may provide that service, although some don't. The link below provides a list of them throughout the United States

Here is a link that might be useful: USDA Cooperative Extension

    Bookmark   July 20, 2014 at 6:21AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
toxcrusadr(Zone 6a - MO)

You should be able to get a lot of lab analysis done before you cross the $100 mark. What kind of compost volume are you producing per year, and how many tests would you be running?

In 20 years of (suburban garden) composting, I've analyzed my soil twice and my compost once. Unless there are problems occurring, I figure if I put good ingredients into the compost, good compost comes out. So far it's worked pretty well. Of course I have no idea what your operation looks like, so I'm not saying you don't need to test, just sharing my experience.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2014 at 11:21AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tropical_thought(San Francisco)

That was just my point on the other thread, if you put good things in and you make compost yourself, you are ok, but if you buy it somewhere and have it trucked in then you should test it before adding it, as once it is added, it is really hard to undo anything to the soil. Unless of course, someone before you, added something bad, or there was meth lab waste located in your garden.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2014 at 12:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
toxcrusadr(Zone 6a - MO)

I think I saw that on H&G Network - "Make a Lovely Garden Meth Lab!"

Seriously though, I have used a multitude of imported compost products and have never noticed any problems in the garden that I could attribute to them. I look for good appearance and aroma, and I vary the types rather than using just one source. I've never felt the need to test any and all imported compost. YMMV.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2014 at 3:53PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
rescuing a defunct flower bed
We bought our house a year ago and now want to replant...
Coco peat powder for the gooey compost pile?
Hello Friends, I am from tropical Assam in India; I...
Need advice on watering succulents with new soil
I recently began using soil-less soil, as has been...
how would one add / help mycorrhizae
On another thread (very long and informative - why...
Lawn fertilizer to increase nitrogen in flower beds?
For several years now my lawn and beds have been fed...
Sponsored Products
Self Rimming Double Bowl Kitchen Sink
Textured Lines Rug 4' x 6' - NAVY
$799.00 | Horchow
Home Decorators Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug: Home Decorators Collection Rugs Dudley
Home Depot
Hudson Valley Laconia Old Bronze Swing Arm Wall Lamp
Lamps Plus
27" Black Granite Stone Single Trough Bathroom Sink - CORSICA SHADOW
Joseph 18-Inch Blue Rain Decorative Pillows, Set of 2
$79.95 | Bellacor
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™