Through the Agricultural and Environmental Services Laboratories (AESL), UGA Extension provides testing for:
- Soil analysis
- Plant tissue analysis
- Water quality
- Animal waste/manure
- Feeds and forages
- Hazardous waste
- Trace analysis
More information about testing services can be found on the AESL webpage.
Soil testing is important in determining the nutrient status of your soil. In Georgia, most soils have a low pH and are deficient in one or more of the essential plant nutrients, such as phosphorus, potassium, calcium, or magnesium. It is recommended that soil is sampled and sent for analysis every 2 to 3 years on home lawns. On intensively cropped soils, annual sampling and analysis is recommended.
Here are some of the soil tests offered by UGA (fee includes shipping):
- S1 - $9
- Routine test: pH, Lime requirement, Phosphorus (P), Potassium (K), Calcium (Ca), Magnesium (Mg), Zinc (Zn), Manganese (Mn)
- S2 - $13
- S1 + Na, Fe, Cu, Cr, Mo, Ni, Cd, Pb + CEC (Cation Exchange Capacity), % Base Saturation
- S5 - $21
- Texture by Hydrometer (% sand, silt, clay)
- S9 - $17
- Nitrate-Nitrogen by KCl extraction
- S11 - $45
- Potting Mix/Greenhouse/Nursery Media Test: pH, Phosphorus (P), Potassium (K), Calcium (Ca), Magnesium (Mg), Nitrate (NO3-N), Ammonium (NH4-N), Soluble Salts (SS)
Don’t see a test you’re looking for? Check out a full list of soil analyses. Note that shipping is not included as part of the fee. Also, visit our office for soil sampling bags, soil sampling probes, and advice on how to take a soil sample.
Want more information on soil testing? See the Soil Test Handbook for Georgia.
Other soil resources:
- N-P-K Soil Fertilization Calculator
- Nitrogen Availability Calculator
- Broiler Litter Fertilization Worksheet
Are you one of the 1.7 million Georgians that gets your water from a private well? That means that you are responsible for the quality and safety of your well water. Just because your water looks clear and tastes normal does mean it is always safe to drink. Some contaminants, such as nitrates and heave metals, can only be discovered through laboratory testing. In general, laboratory tests can look for four different types of contaminants: bacteria (such as fecal coliform or E. coli), minerals (like iron, calcium, and copper), organic chemicals (pesticides or petroleum contaminants), and others (heavy metals and radiological contaminants). Currently the basic water test (W1), total coliform/E. coli (W35), and nitrate test (W3) are recommended to be tested annually. An expanded water test (W2) is recommended to be performed initially and then once every 3 years.
Here are a few of the water tests provided by UGA (price includes shipping):
- W1 - $21
- Basic water test: pH and Hardness, Phosphorus (P), Potassium (K), Calcium (Ca), Aluminum (Al), Boron (B), Chromium (Cr), Copper (Cu), Iron (Fe), Magnesium (Mg), Manganese (Mn), Molybdenum (Mo), Nickel (Ni), Silica (SiO2), Sodium (Na), Zinc (Zn)
- W2 - $65
- GA Expanded water test: Basic Water Test (W1) + Anions (W3) + Soluble Salts (W11) + Alkalinity (W18)
- W3 - $45
- Anions by ion chromatography: Chloride (Cl), Fluoride (F), Nitrate-Nitrogen (NO3-N), Phosphate (PO4), Sulfate (SO4)
- W10 - $7
- pH only
- W35 - $46
- Total coliform/E. coli: Requires sample in a special bottle
Interested in more tests? See all available tests for water quality (price does not include shipping). Want to save time? Print the Water Submission Form and fill it out prior to dropping your sample off at the lab or your local extension office.
Have laboratory tests consistently indicated a problem with your private well water? Learn about protecting your well and wellhead to avoid frequent contamination along with home water quality and treatment.
Also, check out all of UGA Extension’s Household Water Quality Publications. Visit our office for sampling bottles and more information on water quality.
Forage and Feed Analysis
There are about 4 million acres of pasture, hay, and silage in Georgia, including many different forage species. Forage quality varies widely among species, but cannot be determined using texture, smell, or appearance. The best way to determine the nutritional value of your forage is to obtain a representative sample and have it analyzed in a laboratory.
Here’s a short list of some feed and forage analyses offered (price includes shipping):
- F1 - $43
- Hays and silage: (NIR + nitrate + minerals), Moisture, Neutral Detergent Fiber (NDF), Acid Detergent Fiber (ADF), Crude Fiber (estimated), Non-fibrous carbohydrates (NFC), Crude Protein, Lignin, Nitrate (NO3), Total Digestible Nutrients (TDN), Relative Forage Quality (RFQ), 10 Minerals (see test F26)
- F2 - $23
- Hays and silage: F1 test, excluding mineral analysis
- F7 - $50
- Other feeds (by wet chemistry): Moisture, Crude Fiber, Crude Protein, Total Digestible Nutrients (TDN), 10 Minerals (see F26)
- F26 - $30
- Minerals: Phosphorus (P), Potassium (K), Calcium (Ca), Magnesium (Mg), Manganese (Mn), Iron (Fe), Aluminum (Al), Copper (Cu), Zinc (Zn), Sodium (Na)
More tests for feeds and forages can be found here (price does not include shipping). Submission forms for cattle, horses, and others are below:
Check out these publications from UGA Extension about feeds and forages for more information:
- Common Terms Used in Animal Feeding and Nutrition
- UGA Feed Cost Analyzer
- Using Relative Forage Quality to Categorize Hay
Visit our office to borrow a hay probe and to drop off samples.
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