ARE YOU TIRED OF GETTING GENERIC ANSWERS AND BAD ADVICE TO YOUR IMPORTANT LAWN CARE QUESTIONS?
Turf Dietitian will analyze data that will allow us to develop strategies based on science experience and your property’s unique influences, that determine plant and soil health.
WHY SHOULD I TEST MY SOIL?
Soil testing helps determine certain existing problems and potential future concerns. A qualified lawn expert and soil test professional can help determine lawn care treatments, including composition of fertilizer needed for healthy sustainable growth. Their scientific diagnosis will help position you for optimal treatment now and in the future.
WHAT DOES A SOIL TEST INVOLVE?
Soil tests carefully examine the soil and provide a diagnosis for current and future treatment. Collecting samples from various parts of the lawn, including the lawn itself, shrubs, trees and garden areas will give an overall analysis allowing the lawn experts to provide a comprehensive treatment plan. The bigger the lawn, the more parts you’ll want to collect to ensure proper testing and results.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD A SOIL TEST BE DONE?
There is no limit on how often soil tests can be performed, and can be done anytime of the year; however ideally would be in the fall or spring as opposed to the main growing season. Testing can be for preventative purposes or as problems arise.
HOW CAN TURF DIETITIAN HELP?
Turf Dietitian can assist you to develop and maintain the most luxurious yard in the world, or we can help to improve the most basic lawn. Our years of experience as Golf Course Superintendents, and Turf Grass Consultants gives us the knowledge and experience to be the best agronomist in the world.
SIX BASIC FACTORS FOR PLANT HEALTH
There are six basic factors for a healthy lawn. Turf Dietitian will analyze your soil sample and provide a scientiﬁc report with a treatment plan.
The biggest impact on the nutrient content of the soil and health of your yard is the water being applied through irrigating and precipitation. Supplemental irrigation and rainfall add more nutrients to the soil in one week’s time than most homeowners apply in many seasons with granular applications.
If you have good quality water, you may be wasting money by applying supplemental nutrients and chemicals, that aren’t needed by the plants in your yard. Apply nutrients, chemicals and water only when they are needed, and not when it fits into your lawn care companies schedule.
If you have poor quality water, that factor alone will cause challenges which make it difficult to grow beautiful health yards. Turf Dietitian can develop programs to compensate for poor quality water.
Soil is home for plants! The better the soil structure, the better the chances are for you to have a beautiful lawn. The most expensive and well-maintained yards in the world, will struggle when the soil is of poor structure. Whereas, if the physical structure of the soil in your yard is of good quality, you can have a beautiful lawn at a fraction of the cost.
Most of the beautiful lawns in the world were built by bringing in ideal soils, that were amended before they were planted. But, if your yard is like the other 99% of the yards in the world, they were built from the native soil, which may or may not be comprised of good structure. We have many tools and techniques to compensate for situations that are not ideal.
Turf Dietitian places a major emphasis on techniques to improve or restore the proper air to water ratio, in order to enhance plant health and proper root development.
NUTRIENTS IN SOIL RESERVE
The majority of the nutrients in soil reserve come from the water that falls or flows across the property. Nutrients can also enter the soil reserve through organic matter decomposition, animal decomposition and waste, mechanical application, or directly from the atmosphere. Although a large amount of nutrient can be stored in the soil reserve, only a small amount of that nutrient bank is immediately available to the plant. Nutrients in soil reserve must be mineralized (or melted down into a liquid), to be available for plant uptake.
The standard testing methods to determine the nutrient content of the soil has been around for many decades. The lab data from testing soil nutrient content is information that practically every consultant in the industry uses to determine plant needs. However, if this is the only data being used it is nothing more a guess.
Here is a simple analogy to help understand why it’s important to use every piece of data available to determine plant needs. If you had an intricate puzzle that takes up an entire wall, and it has only six pieces to make the puzzle; each piece is essential to see the whole picture. If you lost one piece, you would likely be unable to see enough of puzzle to determine what you’re looking at. Prescription without diagnosis in malpractice.
NUTRIENTS IN SOIL STRUCTURE
Analyzing soil solution is a modern science that very few Agronomist understand. Soil solution is nothing more then what’s sitting on the dinner plate for the plant to eat. The data we get from analyzing what has mineralized and what is surrounding the plant root, is just one more piece to the puzzle. Knowing what in soil solution holds valuable information that was not accessible 20 years ago. This information is the start point to feeding the plant only what it needs. Which in turn saves you money and gives you a healthier plant.
Soil solution is, capillary, or gravitational water that occupies a percentage of the soil pore space. Soil solution participates in physicochemical and biochemical reactions, the cycle of matter in soil, and plant nutrition. The composition of soil solution is determined by soil-forming processes, vegetation, general climatic conditions, the season, weather, and man’s activity, such as the addition of fertilizers. The amount of available nutrients for plant consumption is dependent on the moisture content of the soil
Plant tissue testing provides the most accurate data available to indicate what nutrients the plant has consumed. Although most of what the plant takes up is through the mass flow of nutrient rich gravitational water, a small amount of nutrient is taken up through the plant tissue through atmospheric nutrients, and sugar or amino acid nutritional products.
Plant tissue testing shows us what the plant has eaten out of the soil solution in the past few days. Knowing what the plant eats allows us to fine toon our recommendations which saves our customers even more money and making to plant strong enough to thrive and fight off stress. Stress kills and can cost a lot of money to correct chemically.
PHYSICAL FACTORS AND ENVIRONMENTAL STRESS
Not all of the challenges a Homeowner faces when it comes to having a healthy beautiful lawn are soil related. Physical and environmental factors can make growing healthy turf problematic even with perfect soil conditions.
Typically, when you struggle with the same turf areas, plant beds and gardens year in and year out it’s an indication that a physical condition is obstructing the ability to grow healthy turf. Some common physical factors that make it demanding to grow healthy turf are:
1. Excessive organic matter accumulation
2. Soil layering
3. Soil structure
4. Poor quality irrigation water
5. Improperly constructed greens
6. Inefficient irrigation
7. Shallow rooting
8. Shade from trees or structures
9. Inadequate air movement
10. Poor surface drainage
11. Steep contours
12. Height of cut
13. Surface drainage
14. Drainage system failures
15. Excess traffic
16. Extreme weather
17. Anaerobic bacteria
18. Lack of food for aerobic bacteria
22. Soil reactions
25. Mechanical issues
26. Economic issues
Not only do we need to know everything about how every physical stress factor is affecting your yard, we also need to know the conditions that are causing the factor to occur, we must understanding how to compensate for or cure the factor, then we need to prevent it from reoccurring.
I hope I haven’t scared you off by showing you how difficult it is to manage quality yards. However, I also hope I convinced you that the right team of expert’s can make it affordable to make a serious upgrade to your current conditions.