Our Methods

Soil Testing Instrumentation

We use a variety of instruments to analyze soil samples including:

  • atomic absorption spectrometers;
  • Inductively Coupled Plasma Spectrometers (ICPs);
  • Lachat Flow Injection Analyzer;
  • combustion analyzers;
  • colorimeters; and
  • general laboratory equipment.

Sample Preparation

At the laboratory, each sample is assigned an identification number, transferred to a paper bag, and then placed in a metal tray. Every 12th sample is a quality control sample, either a check sample of known chemical properties to ensure accuracy or a duplicate sample to evaluate laboratory precision.

Samples are dried rapidly under forced air, at room temperature not exceeding 75oF.

Dried samples are crushed with a mechanical grinder and passed through a stainless steel 10-mesh, or 2.0-millimeter sieve to remove stones and unwanted debris.

Routine Soil Tests (The Regular Test)

Soil Tests Available Upon Request

Florist/Greenhouse Tests



Recommended Chemical Soil Test Procedures for the North Central Region. 1988 (revised 2015). North Central Regional Research Publication No. 221 (Missouri Agricultural Experiment Station SB 1001). 

Soil Testing Procedures