[NAFEX] soil tester

Richard MURPHY murphman108 at msn.com
Tue Feb 5 20:29:05 EST 2008


The 4 way tester is questionable.
I might believe the light / moisture readings to +/- 20%, but...
not the Ph or Nutrient scales. Not at all.
Even the $80 pH testers can be off quite a bit, so I still use chemicals / ph test papers.
If you do, it is very important to STAY AWAY from curly light bulbs.
They make your pH paper read all sorts of WRONG DATA colors. Off by a LOT.
You can buy curly ones that mimic the Sun's spectrum for another dollar; they work fine.
I actually did the indoor / outdoor measurement challenge on some wines.


Good (amateur) soil test kits are available for $15
I think I got mine at Jungs. Nitrogen Phos. Potash, Ph, etc.
Neat little kit. 

Murph

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Lee Reich<mailto:garden at leereich.com> 
  To: North American Fruit Explorers<mailto:nafex at lists.ibiblio.org> ; Jerrydana5 at aol.com<mailto:Jerrydana5 at aol.com> 
  Sent: Tuesday, February 05, 2008 7:55 PM
  Subject: Re: [NAFEX] soil tester


  I also would be skeptical about the pH and especially the fertility tests. I have an electronic testor that does only pH and it's of dubious value. I also have one that tests light and moisture. I find the moisture probe very valuable, much easier than digging holes and feeling the soil. Soil is often dry at the surface but plenty moist only a few inches down. I've had and used my moisture testor for over 25 years! 


  Lee Reich, PhD
  http://leereich.com/<http://leereich.com/>


  Books by Lee Reich:
  The Pruning Book
  Weedless Gardening
  Uncommon Fruits for Every Garden
  A Northeast Gardener's Year




  On Feb 5, 2008, at 11:12 AM, Jerrydana5 at aol.com<mailto:Jerrydana5 at aol.com> wrote:


    Do any of you have any experience with these 4 way soil testers?  Stark sells one and Gurney's sells the same one.  They test light, moisture,ph, and fertility--n,p,k. Moisture and light seem pretty unnecessary-I have eyes and hands, but ph and fertility would be nice.  But I am sceptical.  Jerry in southern Indiana





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