With Spring fast approaching, it's time to start planning your garden. To help, English Gardens is offering free soil pH tests until early April 2019.

Testing your soil's pH level eliminates guess work when it comes to fertilizing and caring for your yard and garden. Proper pH levels are important for optimum grown and healthy lawns, trees, flowers, vegetables and shrubs.

The test, which is normally $5.99, includes an analysis of the soil's pH level and an in-store consultation for improving your soil. A soil test eliminates guess work.

“It's the first step to success in your garden,” says Dean Darin, English Gardens Merchandising Manager and Lawn Expert. “A lot of plants are adaptable to varying pH levels. However, lawns, trees, flower and vegetables perform best with optimum pH levels.”

Soil pH is measured on a scale from 1 to 14. A number below 7 is considered acidic, while a number above 7 is alkaline. Most plants and your lawn prefer soil with a pH between 6.2 and 7.2. A soil test will then help determine if your soil is acidic, alkaline or just neutral.

To get your soil tested, homeowners should take these steps: 

  1. Gather dry soil, scquired 4 to 6 inches deep.  If the soil is wet, allow it to dry completely. 
  2. Take care not to touch soil with bare hands. Use a stainless steel spoon to collect the sample.
  3. Place sample in a bag and label the location from where it was removed. 
  4. Note air temperature, sun conditions and the humidity level at the time the sample was collected.
  5. Bring the sample to any one of six English Gardens retail locations. 

Amendment Suggestions

Upon receiving a free soil test, English Gardens experts will offer their suggestions to amend your soil. Common soil amendments include:

  • Espoma Soil Acidifier: This amendment lowers the pH of soils for optimum growth of acid-loving plantings. It contains minerals that are used to correct the problem of alkaline soil.
  • Espoma Garden Lime: This soil amendment raises soil pH and adjusts the pH of excessively acidic soils.

For heavily compacted clay soils, English Gardens experts suggest the Jonathan Green Love Your Soil Natural Soil Food. All natural and organic, Love Your Soil stimulates microbes and creates a biologically healthy soil and loosens heavy soils.

The free pH testing will be available with a personal consultation at the store until Monday, April 8, 2019.

If you have questions, the experts at English Gardens are always available to help!