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Making sense of soil tests - Sept-Oct 2021 Mornings

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Event description

Learn how to read a soil test with confidence! Improve your ability to make good soil decisions and build soil health.

Soils are one of your farm business' most important assets and it's easy to burn money on them! Soil tests are a really useful tool in helping make good soil management decisions but they can seem quite technical.

In this online 4 part Soil Skills Webinar Course we demystify agricultural soil tests and give you a clear, holistic process to follow for reading them. If you are in farming, grazing, dairying or horticulture and you want to improve your ability to read soil tests, then this course is for you! Taking an ecologically based approach, as you go through the course you will start to identify soil constraints and key nutrient issues that may be holding back your enterprise. 

If you are an agronomist starting out and want expert tips on getting the most out of them, join us as we also cover the different approaches to using soil tests.

" I was certainly never taught to read a soil test like this at Uni (Agronomy) and this has me excited again!!" Shontae, Qld

Places in this course are limited to 10 farm businesses so participants get time to ask questions, share and learn with other participants and with different soils. You will need access to Zoom and a soil test to participate in this course.


Webinar 1 - Introduction to Soil Tests: what and why. Using Soil tests: the Golden Rules to getting the most from them. Pulling apart soil tests: the 5 parts to any test. Different tests and labs: Conventional and alternative. Using a soil test to determine soil type. Reading your Soil Test: Worksheet. 

Webinar 2
- Soil Benchmarking. The Soil Health Checklist. Using soil tests to manage soil health - Organic Matter/Carbon and Carbon to Nitrogen Ratio.  Benchmarking and identifying potential issues. Options for improving soil organic matter and carbon to nitrogen ratio.

Webinar 3 - The Soil Health Checklist. Using soil tests to manage soil health - Soil pH, Cation Balances: Hydrogen, Aluminium, Sodium, Potassium Calcium & Magnesium Ratios. Soil Salinity. Benchmarking and identifying potential issues. Options for improving cation balances.

Webinar 4
- Soils and nutrients: the basics. Using soil tests to manage soil fertility - Phosphorous and Sulphur. Benchmarking and identifying potential fertility issues. The 5 steps to holistic nutrient management. Options for improving soil fertility. Pulling it all together.

Dates & Times:


  • 30th September 2021 - 8.30 am to 10 am.
  • 7th October 2021 - 8.30 am to 10 am.
  • 14th October 2021 - 8.30 am to 10 am.
  • 21st October 2021 - 8.30 am to 10 am.


David Hardwick: David is a professional agroecologist. He has been doing soil and regenerative agriculture extension and consulting all over Australia for nearly 20 years. He completed a degree in Ecological Agriculture at the University of Sydney with focus on regenerative and organic farming systems, land management and rural change. David has worked in the conventional, organic and regenerative sectors and across grazing, horticulture, dairying and cropping systems. For the last 10 years he has been teaching farmers and graziers how to read soil tests using fun and practical activities as part of his highly successful Digging Deeper Soils Courses. In 2020 he has started teaching soils online! Check out one of his Vic No Till videos here!

How the Course works!!

The Course is 4 Zoom Webinars, run one each week over 4 weeks. Each session will be recorded so if you miss a session you can catch up on Zoom via the Event Hub. We will also provide you with a Reading your Soil Test: Worksheet to help you make sense of your soil test results and identify issues with your soils as you go through the webinars.

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