Soil sampling is critical to ensuring adequate levels of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, as well as managing soil PH. The payoff: achieving good nodulation and, in turn, high yields.

The latest ‘Focus on Soybean’ presentation, titled “Soil Sampling to Make Fertilizer Recommendations” by Dave Mengel, Professor of Agronomy at Kansas State University, covers the ins and outs of soil sampling, from the process itself to interpreting data from the testing lab. In this talk, Mengel discusses:

  • Where to take samples in a field
  • How many cores are needed to make a good composite sample
  • What depth the sample and why that is important
  • When to take a sample (it really can make a difference)
  • Handling samples to maintain good quality
  • What the numbers coming from a lab really mean

By the end of this presentation, soybean growers should have the information they need to enhance their yields and more efficiently use lime and fertilizer to enhance their profits.

This 45-minute presentation is open access through April 30, 2015.  Viewers can also opt to see a 5-minute executive summary version of this presentation. This shorter version is permanently open access courtesy of the United Soybean Board.

Other ‘Focus on Soybean’ presentations can be viewed at

‘Focus on Soybean’ is a publication of the Plant Management Network.  To get the most out of the Plant Management Network’s full line of resources, please sign up for PMN’s free electronic newsletter, PMN Update.

Webcasts on a variety of other crops can be found in PMN’s Education Center.

The Plant Management Network ( is a nonprofit online publisher whose mission is to enhance the health, management, and production of agricultural and horticultural crops. It achieves this mission through applied, science-based resources, like ‘Focus on Soybean.’

PMN partners with the United Soybean Board, as well as more than 80 other organizations, which include universities, nonprofits, and agribusinesses.

This article originally appeared as a press release for the Plant Management Network and has been reposted with permission. 

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