We are having a discussion about High Brix in the food forum. All the necessary minerals need to be present in the soil to grow high brix food. Where is a good place to send soil samples for testing for home gardens? We want recommendations for non-chemical amendments, of course. Has anyone had this done for a reasonable price?
http://www.umass.edu/plsoils/soiltest/soilbrochc.htm I would test my soil with UMASS Amherst (MA,USA). The link is the price list. As far as non chemical amendments I am sure that is something that can be quickly done with a little research after you may be aware what the soil is deficient in.
Local universities do soil tests. A quick google search of your area should help you. However, you may be looking for a more "new age" (or OLD age) soil testing that is uses OM amendments. That I am not too sure of
If you want non-chemical recommendations back, I do not know of any university lab that would do this. When you do end up picking a lab, use the same lab with the same tests year after year so you really know that you are comparing the same results each time. Otherwise, you are just looking at a series of anecdotes where it's hard to make the connections. Soil is dynamic and living, so a test in spring will look different from a test in the summer. You want the same test of the same soil from the same lab at the same time of the year.
For $60 - $100, you could test with soilfoodweb. They would give organic recommendations back. I haven't personally used them, but it was founded by Dr Elaine Ingham, who was just this week named chief research scientist at the Rodale Institute. This lab looks at how soil biota affects nutrient availability. http://www.oregonfoodweb.com/
buy Michael Astera's book the Ideal Soil available from www.soilminerals.com and send your soil sample to Logan Labs. standard test is $20. which includes. P, S, Ca, Mg, K, Na, B, Fe, Mn, Zn, Cu, and Al. with Michael's book you can figure how much of what admendment you need.