What are soil pH testing kits? Why are they useful? In this article we will discuss why a soil pH testing kit is invaluable for agriculture. We will also discuss how to use the data you get from soil pH testing to help you maximise your yield and make your crops healthier.
Why soil pH is important in food production
Before we discuss how soil pH testing kits work, first we need to talk about why soil pH is an important factor in growing crops. Soil pH is an important factor because it greatly affects the availability of various nutrients to the plants. The reason, is different pH levels change the chemical forms of the nutrient. Not all chemical forms of a particular nutrient can be absorbed by the plants.
For example, in ph 6-8 the highest concentrations of dissolved nitrogen will be present in the soil. Outside this range, the concentration of dissolved nitrogen will be less than ideal. Another example is about the phosphorus availability. Phosphorus is only available for plants in the soil pH range 6.0 to 7.5.
To avoid plant nutrient deficiencies, it’s important to monitor and control the soil pH levels. This way, we can maintain the health of our crops. If we can continuously monitor the soil pH, we can also make quick and necessary adjustments. One quick and easy way to monitor the soil pH is through the use of testing kits.
What are soil pH testing kits
Soil pH testing kits are easy to use. Home gardeners, agriculture professionals, and farmers use them routinely to monitor soil pH levels. Each soil pH testing kit can also carry out at least 20 tests. Each kit also contains complete instructions. Some soil pH testing kits also include a reference guide where you can see the ideal soil pH levels for different plants.
Soil pH testing kits usually include a testing solution and a test tube. You pour the soil sample into the test tube and mix it with the solution. A certain colour will appear which you can compare with a chart. Different colours mean different pH levels.
Results may vary depending on where exactly you get your samples. Different soil areas have varying pH levels although they fall on a close range. It’s natural that there will be fluctuations in your readings. As mentioned earlier, the ideal pH level for nutrient availability is not just one number. It falls on a comfortable range.
Why you should have a soil pH testing kit now
A soil pH testing kit helps you quickly determine the health of your soil. You just need a few minutes each day to monitor the soil pH levels. With that small effort, you can greatly improve the health of your plants.
When the soil acidity or alkalinity is too low or too high, you can easily make adjustments to bring the soil pH levels to the ideal range. The direct result will be you maximise your yield and plant growth rate. Another result is that the plants will get the most out of the fertilizers you apply. They will be able to absorb the nutrients more effectively.
If you have a soil pH testing kit, you can now determine the level of acidity or alkalinity of your soil. Right after seeing the results of the tests, you can quickly make adjustments that improve the health of your plants.