soil testing

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ghibli
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soil testing

Post by ghibli » Tue Dec 18, 2018 7:18 pm

Greetings fellow gardeners. Please, does anyone know of a soil testing service? It could be linked to a farmers cooperative or perhaps there is a government agency? My problem: I have planted some lovely healthy fruit trees in the Valpo region. They start off full of joy - flower and set fruit, but gradually the leaves turn yellow and the fruit falls. I have been told that the soil is too base and that I should add for example pine needles or horse manure. I have done this in moderation but there still is a problem. Clearly it is senseless to mess with the soil chemistry without knowing what's there. Also, I notice that there are no earthworms so the soil is not aeriated. Any ideas? Thanks.

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Re: soil testing

Post by admin » Tue Dec 18, 2018 7:23 pm

they sell test kits on amazon, but you might be able to find them at one of the feed / agro stores.

if the soil in the region is off, it is not like you are the first to have the problem given the size of the fruit industry in chile.
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41southchile
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Re: soil testing

Post by 41southchile » Wed Dec 19, 2018 1:43 am

ghibli wrote:
Tue Dec 18, 2018 7:18 pm
Greetings fellow gardeners. Please, does anyone know of a soil testing service? It could be linked to a farmers cooperative or perhaps there is a government agency? My problem: I have planted some lovely healthy fruit trees in the Valpo region. They start off full of joy - flower and set fruit, but gradually the leaves turn yellow and the fruit falls. I have been told that the soil is too base and that I should add for example pine needles or horse manure. I have done this in moderation but there still is a problem. Clearly it is senseless to mess with the soil chemistry without knowing what's there. Also, I notice that there are no earthworms so the soil is not aeriated. Any ideas? Thanks.
Coagra (coagra.cl) o Cals (Cals.cl) are 2 that offer that service in the agricultural and horticultural commercial area but there are probably many more in the zona central.
In the Lakes Region Chile for 6 years. It looks like New Zealand in some ways, and is nearly at the bottom of the world too, but there the similarities end.

ghibli
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Re: soil testing

Post by ghibli » Wed Dec 19, 2018 10:54 am

Thanks guys!!! Coagra.cl is really helpful - by which I mean it has a very useful website. The main office, if anyone is interested, is near Buin,
which is home to the Santa Rita vineyard and (amazing) museum and restaurant. Time for a field trip! Cheers.

Julito
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Re: soil testing

Post by Julito » Wed Dec 19, 2018 11:00 am

Start some heavy mulching right out to the drip line of the trees and even dig it in a little. Introduce earthworms into the mulch if possible so they help break it down and pull it into the soil. Keep the mulch a little away from the base of the trees so it doesn't cause rot.

ghibli
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Re: soil testing

Post by ghibli » Wed Dec 19, 2018 8:22 pm

Thanks Julito. Any idea where I can buy some earthworms? I have not seen a single one in my garden. I'm saving grass clippings for mulch...

proger
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Re: soil testing

Post by proger » Wed Dec 19, 2018 9:55 pm

you can grow them.

but first you need to know yourl soil NPK and important minerals like cal, mag, zinc... water... and describe better your problem

Julito
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Re: soil testing

Post by Julito » Thu Dec 20, 2018 12:41 am

No idea where you can buy worms in Chile but a few might already be there deep down. Regardless just mulch. Add 50% leaf litter, twigs, a bit of sand and anything else you can rake up to add to those lawn clippings to airate and help break them down, that alone will draw in other munchers. Buy some cheap general fertiliser and flick it in sparingly as well, the nitrogen helps break things down. Give it a deep water about once a week over Summer depending on the weather and all should be good next season.

Come autumn, rake the leaves back under the trees out to the drip line, it keeps the weeds down and it's your natural mulch. It also insulates the root zones from the extremes of hot or cold. What you'll be doing is recreating what occurs naturally.

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