The When & How of Soil Sampling

As harvest wraps up, farmers thoughts turn to fall field work and planning for next year’s crop. Soil sampling is one way to get a handle on where soil nutrient levels are at or how they’ve changed over time. The trick is to ensure soil samples are taken properly, at the right time and with the right plan in hand in order to get the most useful information from the sample.

On a recent soil sampling trip, Jules Catellier, area manager with Farmers Edge, based at Winnipeg, Man., spoke with about the how, why and when of soil sampling. One key point: soil sampling must be done correctly and with an overall management plan in mind in order to be useful. With that in mind, we asked Jules should we do grid, zone, benchmark or random soil sampling?

See Ross McKenzie’s tips on proper soil sampling depths here.

If you cannot see the embedded video below click here.


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A team effort of RealAgriculture videographers and editorial staff to make sure that you have the latest in agronomy information for your farm.


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One Comment

Adam Muhly

I think you are ahead of the game to take a handful of samples from each sample site and mix the same depth levels for that site. Ie: 5 samples from 0 to 6″ all mixed from say a 10sq.ft. site. This will level off any peaks and valleys from one foot to the next. This is a bigger deal in strip till but works well on all options. Also the first year I get a field will be grid samples so I can get an idea of the overall health of the field. After that switch to topographical and soil type testing. Mix this with good record keeping and you will have complete knowledge of your field before you know it.


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