Most people wouldn’t buy a house sight unseen. They wouldn’t build a new structure without understanding what’s under the future foundation. But research shows that landscaping professionals are missing out on a massive opportunity to achieve the picturesque lawns their customers want without going through trial and error. 

That’s why soil sampling is crucial for proper landscape management. Choosing the wrong fertilizer materials could lead to unnecessary time and money spent, whereas soil sampling helps landscapers make more intentional choices and mitigate risk moving forward. 

It’s a simple but largely-underutilized process. Nowadays, you can purchase a soil test kit locally from your county office, follow the instructions, then get the sample tested and processed at a reputable soil lab. The test results will reveal invaluable insight into the landscape you’re working with by giving you an analysis of things like:

  • The fertility, health, and suitability of the soil
  • The composition of the soil (sand, loam, clay, etc.)
  • Concentrations of plant nutrients (with the primary nutrients being potassium, nitrogen, and phosphorus) 
  • Harmful toxins and contaminants in the soil
  • Problems related to acidity, salinity, and alkalinity

You can then use the results to create an action plan for your next landscaping project and amend your fertilizer accordingly. For example, if the soil has a low pH level, you might consider using a Calcitic Lime to provide a high level of beneficial calcium. Or, if you’re working with acid-loving plants that thrive at a lower pH level, you can use an acid concentrate to accelerate the uptake of foliar products.  

You may have even experienced “Nutrient Lockout” in the past, where plants can no longer get nutrients due to overwatering or underwatering, a nutrient overload, too much salt, or another imbalance. 

A soil sample will shed light on the problem before it can take a bigger toll on your projects. Then you can course correct by taking steps like adjusting its composition using organic soil amendments.

Last but not least, it will give you the information you need to reduce various things you might put into the landscapes you’re working with, like irrigation systems, pesticides, and even unnecessary fertilizers. It’s a simple change in routine that can help you avoid costly inputs and achieve great results.

Alternatively, soil samples prevent you from making immediate decisions that could cause plant stress (like using too much lime). It will also help ensure the landscape doesn’t degrade from issues like soil erosion and infertility in the long term. 

It’s all about getting to know the landscape you’re working with, then picking products that promote soil health and plant growth. You’ll have a better understanding of what kind of soil the plants thrive in so you can give them a happy, healthy home. 

As a landscaper, there are several benefits to testing soil. But primarily, you’re giving your customers peace of mind by applying newfound knowledge backed by science. Going the extra mile will save you time by removing the guesswork, letting you take on new projects and build a positive reputation.

Keep in mind, it’s always best practice to take soil samples before fertilizing and planting, as fertilizers could skew the results. 

Tech Terra Environmental offers ecological solutions for tree and turf care professionals. We specialize in environmentally conscious application products to improve plant and soil health for lawn care providers, landscape contractors and municipalities & schools in the tree and turf care industry. Please call to speak to a specialist at 609.468.1905 or email

Join Our Community


Welcome to Tech Terra Environmental

Get first access to industry news, product launches and advice on tree & turf applications.

By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Tech Terra Environmental, ., Mt Laurel, NJ, 08054, You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact