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For Christmas I got one of those small kits that test the soil using a chemical enclosed in capsules. The one I got does Ph, nitrogen, phosphorus, and potash. And today I gave it a spin, and this is my results.

Ph - 7.25

N - 0

P - 0

K* - low

These results were horrible. I did plenty of video watching and review reading to find that this may not be to inaccurate? I want to know if I did something wrong here. And to help people understand what I did I listed the steps below.

1) Gather 15 samples from around my garden (it is large) and mixed it in a ice cream pale

2) Put some directly in the test tube (Ph), added capsule and filled with water to line specified in the directions. Let sit

3) mixed rest of dirt 1:5 (dirt:water) and let settle. Took the clean-ish water at top and added to test tube half way, added capsule and filled rest of the way. Let sit for 10 min

Basically all I did. I did make sure everything got shaken well so I wasn't "testing the surface" of the dirt.

I want to include that my dad added a few years worth of ash from the wood stove to the garden, he stopped 6 yrs ago and am wondering if that is part of the problem.

So to conclude what went wrong? What did I do or are these tests simply to cheap?

*I think this is the letter for potash

  • Ljk2000l, you have done nothing wrong. This is normal for a soil test. This is why I keep going on about soil usually not having the chemistry necessary to grow plants...if we don't add it the plants do not get the chemistry...our gardens are completely artificial. Nothing at all is natural about gardens made by man. Our gardens need us to be educated so we can have success with plants...they depend on us completely. Huggs. – stormy Mar 5 '18 at 4:33
  • Ash is not part of your soil. That would be a reason your test came in so high of pH. Have you ever done a test with your Cooperative Extension Service? That would be excellent to test your testing kit! – stormy Mar 5 '18 at 4:35
  • @stormy I can send the soil off to the extension, it isn't much. The only reason I don't do that is it takes a long time to send and receive results. But it is the best way to truly know the soil. It is something I will consider doing because I would like to know the condition of the soil and stand by it. But it is nice that I did not do anything to wrong. I did find out some strategies that other people came up with on YouTube for getting more accurate results. Thanks stormy! – Ljk2000 Mar 5 '18 at 7:19
  • Hi there Ljk....what were these strategies? I am very interested. To do a test and have it lead you wrong is a bummer. I've got at least 3 pH testers to make sure they all agree. – stormy Mar 12 '18 at 22:28
  • 1
    @stormy Good point, I really did not put that much thought into it. – Ljk2000 Mar 14 '18 at 0:49

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