Frequently Asked Questions
I don’t understand what this report means?
The graph on the report shows the level of each of 13 essential nutrients that are plant available in your soil. The graph shows the ideal level at which each of your nutrients should be at for adequate plant health. This is information some of our kit users find interesting.
The most important thing to understand is the fertilizer recommendation. The recommendation is based on the plant available levels of 14 essential nutrients in your soil compared with what your plant needs. The recommendation provided is for NPK. N is Nitrogen, P is Phosphorus, and K is Potassium. If your recommendation reads 10-16-20 @ 1lb/100 sq. ft, you will need 10% N, 16% P, and 20% K at 1 pound per 100 square feet for your yard or garden. But don’t worry, we did all the math for you. Just run down to your local lawn and garden store or find the provided fertilizer online and apply 1 pound of that 10-16-20 fertilizer for a 100 sq. ft section of ground.
What if I want to use a different fertilizer?
My nutrient levels are adequate, but I still can’t grow anything?
Water cycles are very important, especially during heat stress times. Try not to fertilize during the times plants are stressed. This is commonly due to heat stress.
Fertilizer applications should be split up at least 2-months apart. Applications of potassium over 4lbs per 1000sq ft should be broken up into multiple applications. For example, a 0-0-60 @ 10lbs per 1000sq ft should be broken up in a minimum of 3 applications.
My micronutrients look too low, what should I do?
N-P-K are your most important nutrients for plant growth and often adding these in recommended amounts will remedy any micronutrient issues. Micronutrient additions can be costly and don’t always result in better growth or healthier plants. If issues persist, look toward micro-nutrient fertilizers that closely match the deficiencies.
My pH levels are too high?
We recommend applying the fertilizer amendment provided with your report. In most cases this will help reduce high pH levels.
If you are regularly testing (every 3-6 months) and your soil pH is still high, applying ammonium sulfate or elemental sulfur will lower your pH. For ammonium sulfate application, follow manufacturers suggested rates. Soil pH is something that takes a long time to amend, often requiring multiple applications and maintenance for years. We highly recommend monitoring your soil every 3-6 months. It is important to note that pH is logarithmic, meaning 1 pH point increase or decrease is 10 times more acidic or basic.
My pH levels are too low?
We recommend applying the fertilizer amendment provided with your report. In most cases this will help raise low pH levels.
If you are regularly testing (every 3-6 months) and your soil pH is still too low, applying lime will help raise your pH. There are two types of lime to choose from, dolomitic and calcitic lime. Dolomitic lime is great to increase your pH along with helping to increase Magnesium (Mg) if it is found to be low. Calcitic lime is great for adjusting pH without increasing Magnesium (Mg)For lime application, follow manufacturers suggested rates. Soil pH is something that takes a long time to amend, often requiring multiple applications and maintenance for years. We highly recommend monitoring your soil every 3-6 months. It is important to note that, pH is logarithmic, meaning 1 pH point increase or decrease is 10 times more acidic or basic.
Can I use an inoculant to increase my nutrient levels within my soil?
Yes, inoculants are used all the time to help promote nutrient availability within your soil. Key for nutrient cycling, inoculants such as microbes help promote biological growth. Bacteria and mycorrhizae breakdown organic matter and produce beneficial nutrients that plants need to grow. By applying inoculants, you are promoting the growth of these bacteria and fungi.
MySoil uses patented ion-exchange resins that exchange hydrogen (H+) and hydroxide (OH‑) for 13 essential plant nutrients within your soil. These 13 nutrients that MySoil detects are the bio-available forms, meaning they are the forms of nutrients that are readily available to your plant. MySoil simulates a plant root and only uses field-moist soils for analysis.
Standard soil tests don’t accurately represent the amount of bio-available nutrients within your soil. They show total nutrients but not what amount is currently available for plant uptake (bioavailable). The process of a standard soil test changes the natural chemistries of your soil through a process that requires the soil to be dried and then ground into a fine aggregate to remove the majority of the organic compounds (leaves, roots, mycorrhizae, etc). The soil is then exposed to chemicals, which are used in the analytical process to determine the total amount of nutrients within your soil. Through this process, certain nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus are removed, or volatized, when exposed to the high temperature during the drying process. That’s not to say the standard soil test is invalid. There are plenty of uses for the standard soil test, which include knowing the total pool of nutrients within your soil or the mineralology.