Botany Science Fair Project
Analysis of soil samples for their components, ability to hold moisture, fertility and pH

Projects by Grade Level
1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th
7th 8th 9th 10th 11th 12th
Home Advanced Award Winning Warning!
Project Information
Title: Analysis of soil samples for their components, ability to hold moisture, fertility and pH
Subject: Botany
Grade level: Middle School - Grades 7-9
Academic Level: Ordinary
Project Type: Experimental
Cost: Low
Awards: None
Affiliation: Canada Wide Virtual Science Fair
Description: pH of soil samples is measured by a litmus paper or a pH meter. Moisture retention is measured by adding water to planting pots filled with different soil samples; after an hour measure, with a measuring cup, the amount of water caught in trays placed under the pots. For soil fertility plant seeds of the same plant in planting pots containing different soils, then monitor plant development over time.

In agriculture, a soil test is the analysis of a soil sample to determine nutrient content, composition and other characteristics, including contaminants. Tests are usually performed to measure fertility and indicate deficiencies that need to be remedied.

The quality of the original soil sample plays a key role in determining the practical value of test results. Most labs will provide documentation outlining the proper procedures for collecting soil samples.

Soil testing is often performed by commercial labs that offer an extensive array of specific tests. Choosing the test lab site is just as important as the test results. There are many soil testing labs in the United States, but finding the right one for you will take some research. It is most beneficial for the producer to find the local most lab, as the workers will have a greater knowledge and more experience working with the local soils.

Tests include, but aren't limited to, major nutrients - nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K), secondary nutrients - sulfur, calcium, magnesium, minor nutrients - iron, manganese, copper, zinc, boron, molybdenum, aluminum, physical properties - soil acidity, electrical conductivity, soil organic matter, moisture content, and soil contaminants (e.g., fuel components such as benzene, toluene, xylene, petroleum hydrocarbons).

Soil testing can be an easy, cost effective way to manage agronomic as well as horticultural soils. It tells key nutrient levels, as well as pH levels, so the producer can make the best choice when purchasing fertilizers and other nutrients.

Less comprehensive do-it-yourself kits are also available, usually with tests for three important plant nutrients - nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) - and for soil acidity (pH). Do-it-yourself kits can usually be purchased at your local cooperative or through the university or private lab you choose. Prices of the tests will vary on the lab/university you purchase it from and also on what kind of test you want to do. Lab tests are more accurate, though both types are useful. In addition, lab tests frequently include professional interpretation of results and recommendations. Always refer to all proviso statements included in a lab report - these may outline any anomalies, exceptions and shortcomings in the sampling and/or analytical process/results.

Source: Wikipedia (All text is available under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License)

Useful Links
Science Fair Projects Resources
Citation Guides, Style Manuals, Reference
General Safety Resources
Electrical Safety FAQ
Botany Science Fair Projects

Botany Award Winning Projects

Botany Experiments


Projects Home
Primary School
Elementary School
Middle School
High School
Easy Projects
Award Winning
Popular Ideas
Branches of Science

Science Fair Project Guide
Science Fair Project Types
The Scientific Method - How to Experiment
The Display Board
Topics, Ideas, Sample Projects

Repeat Famous Experiments and Inventions
Science Jokes Science Trivia
Scientists & Inventors

Read for Free
The Science Fair
A Juvenile Science Adventure Novel
by Julian T. Rubin

Human Abridged Wikipedia Articles

My Dog Kelly

Follow Us On:

Privacy Policy - Site Map - About Us - Letters to the Editor

Comments and inquiries:

Last updated: January 2018
Copyright 2003-2018 Julian Rubin