In order to identify the real causes of plant or soil based health issues, Soilsmart use and have developed a unique and effective range of soil and plant analyses which include: soil chemistry, plant sap, soil & plant biology and water analysis All tests come with a comprehensive and understandable report and a suggested course of action.
SAP Analysis: The Soilsmart approach to plant SAP Analysis is a novel but valuable diagnostic tool which has demonstrated an ability to detect plant deficiencies that other methods are simply unable to. Unlike other techniques, Sap analysis assesses one of the most integral and primary functions of plants, because it measures both the result and efficiency of photosynthesis. The carbohydrates produced via photosynthesis are needed for a wide variety of internal metabolic plant functions and are the plants’ primary food source. It is estimated that 90% or more of all material produced by the plant, results directly from the process of photosynthesis. Plant Sap analysis is particularly useful in identifying and assessing the affects that damaged or compromised root systems can have on plant health. The timely and regular measurement of plant SAP can not only provide trends in terms of plant performance and nutrient balance, but it has also proven to be an extremely quick and useful method of gauging the potential for plant health issues, in many cases before they are otherwise obvious. Sap analysis can enable the pro-active management of potential problems like insect or fungal attack, or nutritional deficiencies before the symptoms become obvious. Strategically, the process of photosynthesis (carbohydrate production) can and should be checked leading into any period of potential stress. Similarly, Sap analysis can be very useful testing plants prior to dormancy to ensure they are producing and storing sufficient carbohydrates to enable a strong return in the Spring.
Soil Analysis: Soil nutrient analysis is an important tool to assess the degree of efficiency with which soils can support plant growth. Regular assessment of the soils’ nutritional status is crucial to managing healthy plant growth and like nearly everything in nature, it needs to be in a reasonable balance for optimum plant performance. The analytical methodology we employ to test soil uses a combination Albrecht and Reams analyses to assess the status of the soil and has been designed to achieve the best soil nutrient/mineral balance for any site or situation. One of the key differences of this method is the assessment of 'plant available' nutrients - different extraction methods are used to reveal not only total nutrient levels but also levels of plant availability. Being able to accurately assess ‘plant availability’ can be critically important for minerals such as Phosphorus, Iron and Manganese which are easily bound in the soil and can become limited in terms of their availability to the plant. Our soil analyses are conducted in NATA accredited laboratories to ensure the highest level of accuracy and uniformity and our reports have been designed to be understandable and provide as much usable information as possible, for the site manager.
Biological Soil analysis: Whilst the assessment of the soils nutritional balance is important, it is however just one piece of the puzzle. Improving nutritional balance and eliminating obvious nutrient deficiencies doesn’t necessarily result in better plant health because without a functioning soil biomass and an effective root system, the soil can be just a reservoir of ‘potentially available’ nutrients. Through our biological assessments we can review the overall biological status of the soil, again concentrating on balance but also on beneficial vs antagonistic organisms. We can also assess nematode populations either as a precautionary task or because of root damage. Once again there is a need for balance within the nematode groups, so we assess the entire population, rather than simply looking at the antagonistic species in isolation.
Water analysis: The quality of irrigation water is another potential influence on plant growth and soil health, particularly in situations where saline conditions have developed, or where mineral imbalances and surplus are relevant. Because water analysis can also be useful in addressing nutritional imbalance, Soilsmart have access to a wide range of comprehensive testing for home, recreational turf, civil, commercial, industrial and agricultural applications. Liquid testing includes analysis of standard water - drinking, bore, dam, spring, creek, ground subterranean and tank water for physical, chemical and bacteriological parameters as required. The laboratory used by Soilsmart for water analysis, routinely conducts environmental monitoring of waters for physicochemical parameters, metals, contamination, nutrients, salts, bacteria and algal biomass and holds NATA accreditation for trace metals in fresh and marine waters.