Many people across the U.S. enjoy growing gardens and enjoy the ornamental landscapes and fresh produce, but few achieve the kind of healthy growth they really want. Sometimes their plants just show a good growth initially and then slowly wither away.

Some backyard gardeners are not that lucky. Their plants don't even manage to take root. No, it's not always the equipment or the gardener at fault. It may be the soil you use to grow your plants. A laboratory test that checks your soil for a number of factors could provide the answers to the problems that you face as an a backyard gardener..

The key to good gardening is to understand how crucial it is to maintain a balance of nutrients and other elements in the soil. Its a job that most professional gardeners and landscapers are trained to do. For your plants to grow and thrive, the soil requires successful chemical balance. This is not something that only professionals do; it's for everyone who wants a great garden.

Proper nutrients are essential for all farmers to produce crops that not only grow, but thrive. If you get a laboratory test that gives you the direction you need to improve your substrate, things will get easier. As a result the cost of your pesticides and fertilizers will decrease to a great extent. Well nourished plants tend to have their own natural defense of pests.

The advantage of testing the soil before planting is that it gives you the prior warning you need to remedy a situation even before you sow the seeds. Only proper tests from a reputed lab can tell you if your substrate is suitable for planting or if it is lacking in nutrients or contains pathogens.

The professionals from testing labs give you a proper insight into the condition of your substrate. You will learn how acidic it is and whether it needs treatment to remedy an unsuitable pH. All plants need a good pH balance to grow and thrive. You can also determine the amount of organic matter in your substrate.

Although there are a lot of self tests that growers can purchase off the shelf, they can be quite time consuming and are not usually recommended. These tests will analyze your soil for essential nutrients such as potassium, nitrogen, and phosphorous and also test the pH levels of the substrate.

However, these self tests can prove ineffective and do not help to solve the as issues that arise when the results finally become available. For many growers, the results of these tests may be difficult to read or comprehend. All these factors make lab testing a more viable option.

Of course, lab testing does not always come cheap and you should be prepared to pay a bit more than you would for a self testing kit. In the long run its worth it, because the goal is not just to check the health of your soil. What you want is to conduct an accurate test that helps you reach optimum efficiency. You don't need to burn a hole in your pocket buying fertilizers and pesticides if the quality of the soil is good.

The best thing a lab test gives is a lot more information about your sample. Besides the results that your self test kit gives you, a lab test will also provide data about the micro-nutrient content, the percentage of organic matter, and other contamination that could harm your plants. You also access to have tests that can check for the presence of heavy metals in the sample.

Always consult a laboratory that is well known for providing reliable results and lawn, garden soil test kit services. Such labs will provide you with follow-up advice to improve the condition of your substrate. They should also be able to advise you on factors like improving the organic matter content, fertilizers best suited to your substrate, management techniques that will help improve quality, addition of materials before planting or cover crop requirements.

Soil testing can help you create and maintain a beautiful garden with healthy plants that grow and thrive without too much effort.

By: Andrew Stratton

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