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For The Garden

Gardening tips on testing your soil

Author: Cathy Cromell
Issue: April, 2013, Page 119



ASK THE EXPERTS

Q - I want to plant a tree in my community but the homeowners’ association is concerned that the soil is bad. How can I determine soil condition?

A - While soil sample kits are available, most are rudimentary and likely will not provide you with enough detailed information, comments University of Arizona Maricopa County Cooperative Extension (MCCE) Master Gardener Jackie Rensel. The following two publications will guide you: Soil Sampling and Analysis at cals.arizona.edu/pubs/crops/az1412.pdf and Laboratories Conducting Soil, Plant, Feed or Water Testing at cals.arizona.edu/pubs/garden/az1111.pdf. When choosing a tree, keep in mind that native trees are well adapted to native soil conditions. If properly planted, watered and maintained in their first few years, they can develop into excellent drought-tolerant, low-maintenance trees, providing many years of shade and beauty, notes Rensel. Planting Guidelines: Container Trees & Shrubs provides easy-to-follow instruction at cals.arizona.edu/pubs/garden/az1022.pdf.

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