• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com pie forums private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Anne Miller
  • Leigh Tate
  • Pearl Sutton
  • r ranson
stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • paul wheaton
  • Mike Haasl
master gardeners:
  • Carla Burke
  • John F Dean
  • Jay Angler
  • Beau Davidson
gardeners:
  • Jordan Holland
  • thomas rubino
  • Nancy Reading

Do-It-Yourself Soil and Water Tests

 
steward
Posts: 6440
Location: United States
2997
transportation forest garden tiny house books urban greening the desert
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I thought this would be an interesting topic to bring up. How many and what types of soil tests can be done at home with as little supplies as possible? Please list as many things that you can find. Here is what I've found so far:

Soil Texture By Feel can be performed by following a flow chart:

Vinegar and baking soda can be used to identify if a soil is acidic or alkaline.
SciGuys has a nice video about using red cabbage as a pH indicator:


Test Water and Soil for salinity: salt water conducts electricity very well, but pure H2O is a poor conductor of electricity. One simple idea would be to take a battery and a light bulb and use the water as a medium to connect the two. How well the lightbulb lights up will determine how salty the water is. Any types of extensions to the simple circuit could be added to distance the user from the water to add more safety. Here's a quick demonstration of the concept by Michael Gane:
 
Posts: 155
Location: PNW, British Columbia
9
2
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
You might enjoy these:



 
Dave Burton
steward
Posts: 6440
Location: United States
2997
transportation forest garden tiny house books urban greening the desert
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
What a wonderful and informative video Sam! Thank you!
For visual assessment of nutrient deficiencies, I found Plant Physiology and two neat images online:


This image shows how pH can affect nutrient absorption:
 
Dave Burton
steward
Posts: 6440
Location: United States
2997
transportation forest garden tiny house books urban greening the desert
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
One of the simplest ways to test your soil is to taste it. Acidic soil fizz in your mouth, neutral ones taste like organic matter, and alkaline soils stick to your tongue.
 
steward
Posts: 19765
Location: Pacific Northwest
10093
9
hugelkultur kids cat duck forest garden foraging fiber arts sheep wood heat homestead
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Dave Burton wrote:What a wonderful and informative video Sam! Thank you!
For visual assessment of nutrient deficiencies, I found Plant Physiology and two neat images online:



This image shows how pH can affect nutrient absorption:



Here's two more images from simple plant deficiency guide thread to add to those!

calcium, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, phosphate, iron, potassium, manganese, magnesium

micro nutrient deficiency infograhic. Zinc, sulphur, boron, potassium, copper, molybdenum
gift
 
My PEP Badge Tracker: An easier way to track your PEP Badge Progress
will be released to subscribers in: soon!
reply
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic