Soil Testing

We’ll be testing for soil pH only. For more extensive tests you will need to go to the UMass Soil Testing Lab.
A donation of $1 per sample is requested.

Why Test?
• to optimize plant growth.
• to protect the environment from contamination by runoff and leaching of excess fertilizers.
• to aid in the diagnosis of plant culture problems.
• to improve the soil’s nutritional balance.
• to save money and conserve energy by applying only the amount of lime and fertilizer needed.

Schedule - 2011
Springfield Farmers Market at Forest Park - Every Tuesday, 12:30 - 6 pm.

Amherst Farmers Market every Saturday in May and June, from 9 am to noon on the Amherst Town Common

Greenfield Farmers Market Sat May 28, Sat June 11 Town common area, center if town

Westfield Farmer's Market Thursdays from 1:30 - 5:30 Goodwill Parking Lot - 47 Franklin St. (Route 20 headed west), June 16 - July 28

Chicopee Farmers Market -- Every Wednesday starting July 6th -- Time -- TBA but usually from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm.

South Hadley Farmers Market, Thursdays, 6/2-7/7, but not on 6/16, from 3pm-6pm

Berkshire Botanical Garden any Monday 9-12 center house

Shutesbury Farmers Market - June 4, 9 am to noon

How to sample your soil for testing by the WMMGA

1. When soils are distinctly different or growing different types of plants (ex. lawns, vegetables), sample separately.
2. Areas where there is poor growth should be tested separately.
3. Using a trowel or spade, take thin slices of the soil at locations evenly spaced in your lawn or garden as indicated below. For small areas, use fewer slices; for large areas, use more slices.

KIND OF CROP                            # OF SLICES TO SAMPLE                   SAMPLING DEPTH
Lawns                                                          10 or more                                      top 3-4 inches
Flowers, Vegetables and Small Fruits            10 or more                                      top 6-8 inches

Put slices of soil into a large, clean plastic container or bag and mix thoroughly. Take about one cup of soil mixture and put in a small plastic bag or container. Allow to dry if possible, especially if muddy. Label each sample.

Avoid taking soil which has recently been limed or fertilized.