Soil Tests, Nitrogen and Compost

I had a recent soil test done on one section of my garden. I have had plants die in the past and recently the plants looked poorly in most of the area.

The test showed high levels of phosphorous, potassium and organic matter. The test does not test for nitrogen, but based upon my organic matter levels they didn’t recommend any added nitrogen. They did mention that, “Nitrogen is not listed because the level is not stable in the soil. It changes too frequently.”

What they recommended was to cut back on the compost, since my organic matter level is so high and to cut back on the phosphorous and potassium. He said that high levels can stop the uptake of other nutrients.

Their main recommendations were…

  1. Just use a high nitrogen fertilizer without added phosphorous or potassium – blood meal, cottonseed meal etc.
  2. Don’t add compost for a while. Try hardwood mulch on top

I did notice that added milorganite did green up the plants, but also adds phosphorous.

2 Comments

Filed under soil, Soil Amendments

2 responses to “Soil Tests, Nitrogen and Compost

  1. Anonymous

    Interesting on the nitrogen. Is all the rain leaching the nitrogen out of the soil?

    • What’s unusual is that this one garden is the only one having problems. It may have to do with the fact that there are too many plants for this area. I planted with poppies this year, so I will cut back on the number of seeds next year.

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