Soil Sampling Guide

Properly collecting soil samples is the most important step in any nutrient/soil amendment management program. Soil sampling should reflect tillage, past fertilizer/soil amendment placement, cropping patterns (and correcsponding irrigation requirements), soil type (including drainage and slope characteristics) and perhaps old field boundaries (such as old feed lots, windorws, altered stream beds, etc.). Trends toward reduced and/or zero tillage and technology for variable rate fertilization (VRF) have especially demanded that soil samples be taken more comprehensively and intensively for more accurate fertilizer and soil amendment application. This brochure will discuss the many methods used for taking an accurate soil sample using various methods and under several different types of tillage solutions.