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Washington State University - Puyallup Organic Farming Systems and Nutrient Management

Soils and Soil Testing

How to collect soil samples:

Collecting a soil sample. Shows procedure for collecting a soil sample for nutrient analysis from a garden or small farm. C.G. Cogger. 2010. (♣ Video-Online)

A guide to collection soil samples for farms and gardens.  Fery, M. and E. Murphy.  2013.  EC 628. Oregon St. Univ. Ext. Serv.  (♣ PDF-Online)

Post harvest soil nitrate testing for manured systems west of the Cascades. Sullivan, D.M. and C.G. Cogger. 2003. EM8832-E. Oregon St. Univ. Ext. Serv. (♣ PDF-Online)

Sweet Corn (Western Oregon) Nutrient Management Guide.  Hart, J.M., D.M. Sullivan, J.R. Myers, and R.E. Peachey. 2010.  EM9010-E. Oregon State University Extension Service. (♣ PDF-Online)

Determining Soil Properties:

Determining soil texture by hand.  You can learn how to estimate the texture of your soil by working a soil sample with your hand. C.G. Cogger 2010. (♣ Video-Online)

Estimating soil texture by hand. 3 Flowcharts, English and Español versions. C.G. Cogger. (♣ PDF-Online)

Water and Soil: the sponge analogy for soil moisture.  Explains the role of soil pores in water movement and water holding capacity using a sponge as an analogy. C.G. Cogger 2010. (♣ Video-Online)

Soil Testing Laboratories:

Analytical Laboratories and Consultants Serving Agriculture in the Pacific Northwest. (♣ Website Database)

List of laboratories on The North American Proficiency Testing Program website. (♣ Website Database)

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The USDA web site

♣ The USDA website has a wealth of information on soil types, classification, maps, soil quality, state soils, soil uses, etc.  A new addition is on-line access to county soil surveys. This is a work in progress; some counties have the complete survey available on line, while others are only partially done.

♣ Soil Quality

♣ Soil Use and Management

♣ State Soil Surveys or Soil Survey Online Interactive

♣ Soil Classification

♣ Field Indicators and National and State Lists of Hydric Soils in the United States

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General Soil Information:

Soils of the Puget Sound Area. A set of 29 slides that show the major soil types of the Puget Sound area, how they are related to local geology, and their suitability and limitations for different types of land use. C.G. Cogger. (♣ PDF-Online, use browser’s vertical scroll bar to page through slides)

The Soil Biology Primer. A useful guide to the types and roles of soil organisms and soil ecosystems. Many color photos. View on-line or order paper copy from the USDA. From the Soil Quality Institute, United States Department of Agriculture-Natural Resources Conservation Service. (♣ HTML-Online)

Interpreting Soil Test Results:

Understanding Soil Tests. (Slideshow, 28 slides). Cogger, C.G. (♣ PDF-Online, use browser’s vertical scroll bar to page through slides)

Soil test interpretation guide. Horneck, D.A., D.M. Sullivan, J.S. Owen, and J.M. Hart. 2011.  EC 1478. Oregon St. Univ. Ext. Serv. (♣ PDF-Online)

La Composición y Análisis de Suelos (Presentación de diapositivas, 23 diapositivas). Cogger, C.G. (♣ PDF-Online, utilizar la barra de desplazamiento vertical del navegador a la página a través de diapositivas)

Silage Corn (Western Oregon) Nutrient Management Guide. Hart, J., D. Sullivan, M. Gamroth, T. Towning, and A. Peters. 2009. EM8978-E. Oregon St. Univ. Ext. Serv. (♣ PDF-Online)

Sweet Corn (Western Oregon) Nutrient Management Guide. Hart, J., D. Sullivan, J.R. Myers, and R.E. Peachey. 2010. EM9010-E. Oregon St. Univ. Ext. Serv. (♣ PDF-Online)

Post harvest soil nitrate testing for manured systems west of the Cascades. Sullivan, D.M. and C.G. Cogger. 2003. EM8832-E.  Oregon St. Univ. Ext. Serv. (♣ PDF-Online)