There are a few fundamental things that need to go right if you want the plants to grow perfectly. One of the key elements in the soil! There are many test kits available that you can use to test your gardening soil. There are two main types of soil testers: chemical and digital.
Here are the top-rated soil test kits that you can try out for your garden.
The Rapitest is a premium chemical test kit that comes at an affordable price. There are over 80 different tests that you can do, including potassium, phosphorus, nitrogen, and pH levels. It has a detailed guide on how to do each test. While it may take a bit of trial and error to get it right in the beginning, it is definitely quicker than get it tested at the lab. You will also receive refill options for test agents.
Chemical tests deliver better results than digital ones, but you do have to extract correct amounts of all the chemical agents. It can be quite fun to channel your inner mad scientist for this soil test.
The Luster Lead is a digital and chemical hybrid with a digital pH reader and chemical macronutrient tester. It is perfect for people who may find chemical kits a bit hard to read since digital readings make your life easier.
While it isn’t a complete replacement for lab testers, it is an amazing option for home gardeners. It comes with test tubes and refills capsules that you can turn to when you run out.
The 1847 digital test is the best for checking the pH levels of the soil. You can’t have any imbalances in the pH levels of the soil but do make sure to keep it clean for optimal results. All you need to do is insert the clean probe deep into your soil right at the base of the plant. The screen shows the pH level of the soil when the test is done. It also comes with guides on what the right pH level for some common plants is, so you can use those as a reference point.
The analog 1880 analyzer is one of the top-rated soil test kits since it measures macronutrients, sunlight levels, soil moisture, and pH levels of the soil. However, some reviews do highlight that the macronutrient test can sometimes fail. Since it doesn’t give separate values for macronutrients, you may not learn about the overall nitrogen level.
It does give an overall fertility test for the soil that can also work perfectly for home gardeners. For plants that need a balance of nutrients, you won’t go wrong with such tests. It’s also great if you are setting up a new garden and need to check the sunlight levels.
The Soil Savvy kit is for professional-level testing since it is quite well regarded in the gardening community. It allows you to get pretty accurate results way more quickly than professional labs. It tests for both micro and macronutrients in the soil. It tests for nitrate, nitrogen, phosphorous, magnesium, calcium, aluminum, manganese, zinc, iron, copper, sulfur, sodium, and boron.
The Soil Savvy kit also offers synthetic and organic fertilizers for the plants and how much you should be using. This can be a game-changer for beginners who can save a lot of time researching for the right fertilizer based on the readings you are getting.
The 1601 chemical soil test is a classic kit that is pretty easy to use. All you need to do is add a sample of the soil into the tubes with some distilled water. Now, add in the correct regent and shake it. When the color is fully developed, you can just compare it against the provided color chart to get the results.
The soil test can check potassium, phosphorous, nitrogen, and pH levels. You will be able to do 10 tests without relying on the refill package that it comes with. It is perfect for people who want an affordable option to get some baseline readings.
The AquaChek chemical test is a strip test kit. While the accuracy isn’t as high as some gardeners would like, it is better for people who want a bit of range when it comes to their soil tests. It is quite easy to use since you only need to:
- Mix distilled water and a soil sample
- Shake it
- Put in the test strip
- Pull the strip out and read the results
It works well as a baseline test, and we wouldn’t recommend it for professional results in any way.
The Atree 3-in-1 soil analog tester kit measures light, soil moisture, and pH values. It is a great basic unit for people who want to keep a check on the pH levels regularly. It also has a sunlight sensor that can help you get more details on the amount of sunlight your plants are getting.
Any of the top-rated soil test kits will work for gardeners at home who don’t need lab-level results. You will find that getting fertilizers and caring for your garden is easier when you have the right tester kits for your plants.