Soil Sampling

Jr. Anders, Batty, Jr., James  |  4/20/2006 8:07:23 PM

How to Take Soil Samples

The LSU AgCenter tests soil for farmers and home gardeners alike. These samples are tested and evaluated for nutrients and minerals in the soil, along with the soil pH. The results are customized for whatever crop or plant that is to be grown. If, for example, the grower wants to plant annual flowers and shrubs, the soil is analyzed as stated above and the necessary adjustments the grower needs to make to the soil based on the analysis are suggested.

Follow these simple steps to have your soil tested:

  • For an average garden of about ½ acre, take five to six samples at a depth of 4 inches. Mix the samples in a bucket or other container and pour the contents into a small container or plastic bag (the soil has to be dry). Be sure the total volume of the soil is 2 cups.
  • Bring the sample to the LSU AgCenter office at 1301 North Florida Street in Covington, La., located off Collins Blvd. Office hours are from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. We are closed for lunch from noon until 12:30 p.m. 
  • Please visit the Soil Lab section of the LSU AgCenter website for current soil sample fees and forms. Bring a money order or check for payment, made payable to SPESS-STPAL. We do not accept cash.
  • Fill out the soil information sheet provided on this page or at our office.
  • Soil samples are then taken to the LSU campus in Baton Rouge for analysis. After 10-14 days, the results will be mailed to the address on the soil information sheet or will be sent to the e-mail address provided on the form.
  • After receiving your results, you may call our office at 985-875-2635 if you have any questions.
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