DIY







Easy Home Mason Jar Soil Test

Before getting your garden started this season, test your soil composition and texture in minutes with a simple home mason jar soil test.

| March 2018

Grow. Food. Anywhere. (Hardie Grant, 2018) by Mat Pember and Dillon Seitchik-Reardon goes through every fruit and veggie you can think of, giving you the best tips on growing each, as well as the different buggies and diseases that may be coming after your garden. The following excerpt is their at-home mason jar soil test.

When going on a date, there are a few basic pieces of information you probably want to know before you proceed. Do they have any dietary requirements? Do they have a passport? Have they previously dated any of your friends? Although none of it is necessarily make-or-break, a little bit of information can go a long way in helping you to manage your expectations. It will also change how you approach the date. The Mason Jar Soil Test will offer similar insights for the garden. In fact, it’s a bit like garden speed dating.

While not as precise as sending soil off to the lab, the Mason Jar Soil test is a quick and easy way to get a snapshot of your soil texture, which is to say, the relative proportions of sand, silt and clay. Just like potential partners, your soil will not be perfect, but understanding its flaws will guide your approach to your shared life. If the two of you are going to build an enduring relationship, then it is always going to be a work in progress.

What You Need

• 470 milliliters (16 fluid ounces) sealable glass jar (or larger)
• Water
• 1 teaspoon dishwashing liquid
• Hand trowel or shovel

Instructions

1. Find a clean jar with a threaded lid. We like this old passata bottle. Be sure that your jar has a vertical edge, as curved jars will distort the results.



2. Dig a small hole to a depth of about 20 centimeters (8 inches). Angle the shovel straight down to cut a thin cross section of the soil. Remember, this needs to fit in a jar, so don’t get too much.

3. Remove any obvious rocks or organic debris from the sample. You want to get your soil sample as clean as possible for this test.

geodevos
6/13/2018 10:42:02 AM

At least we learned something about perlite and etc. so it wasn't a total waste of time.


Dee
6/13/2018 9:19:00 AM

Your potting mix and loam are the same percentages..??


ConniePerry
4/13/2018 10:15:12 AM

This article doesn't go on to explain what to do once the soil has separated. It gives no breakdown as to what to look for in the perfect soil or what to look for if you need to amend it. Basically a useless article.







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