Maintaining of soil health is very important for sustainable and profitable agriculture. Soils are heterogeneous in nature. Soils need to be analyzed for various Physical, Chemical and biological property to maintain the fertility. The best method to study the soil is by soil sampling and nutrient analysis.
Soil test is a process by which elements (phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium, sulfur, manganese, iron, copper and zinc) are chemically removed from the soil and measured for their “plant available” content within the sample. The quantity of available nutrients in the sample determines the amount of fertilizer need to be recommended for the ensuing crop. Soil test also measures soil pH, humic matter and exchangeable acidity.
Factors to be considered while taking soil sample:
|Sl. No.||Crop||Soil sampling depth|
|1||Grasses and grasslands||2||5|
|2||Rice, finger millet, groundnut, pearl millet, small millets etc.(shallow rooted crops)||6||15|
|3||Cotton, sugarcane, banana, tapioca, vegetables etc. (deep rooted crops)||9||22|
|4||Perennial crops, plantations and orchard crops||Three soil samples at 12, 24 and 36 inches||Three soil samples at 30, 60 and 90 cm|