At Deeside, we believe that getting your soil right is the basis to profitable farming. We regularly hold seminars to inform this. We offer a full range of soil analysis, from basic to Albrecht tests.
The Deeside Soil Health package comprises a suite of laboratory tests that assess all the key parameters. It integrates measurements of soil nutrient status with soil texture, organic matter and biological activity to produce a Soil Health Index. The foundation for the Soil Health Index is the rate of evolution of CO2. This relates directly to soil microbial activity and can be used to estimate nitrogen mineralisation rates. Adjustments to this CO2 evolution index take into account biological activity limiting factors such as soil nutrients, soil texture, soil organic matter and pH. For example, soil texture affects microbial activity by regulating temperature, air and water exchange rates. For sandy soils an adjustment downwards is required, whereas for soils with a high clay content an increase is needed.
The new Soil Health package includes:
- Soil pH – this influences nutrient interactions, root development and microbial population dynamics.
- Available phosphorus – major impact on root development, root exudate formation and plant-microbe interactions. Essential for biological nitrogen fixation.
- Available potassium – related to nitrogen uptake, carbohydrate formation and bulk plant development. Low K statu during times of stress can have a major impact on the composition and amount of exudate production. This can therefore impact on microbial activity around the root system.
- Available magnesium – central to nitrogen and potassium uptake, photosynthesis and can influence the composition of root exudate production.
- Soil particle size distribution – relative percentage of sand, silt and clay, soil textural classification is central to RB209 fertiliser recommendations and soil erosion risk assessment. Soil texture influences nutrient and moisture retention, microbial population dynamics and carbon sequestration.
- Soil organic matter – an essential component of stable soil aggregates, influencing nutrient and water retention, soil structure and plant-microbe interactions.
- Respiration rate – CO2 evolution is directly related to soil respiration, a general measure of biological activity, indicating microbial biomass, carbon sequestration and nitrogen mineralisation rates.
To avail of these services, please get in touch using the link below.