Additionally, do you think that it is beneficial if more people do this on their own to spur environmental awareness, and activism?
The Texas Plant and Soil Lab website suggests you send in a properly collected soil sample in a locked quart sized sandwich bag (avoid glass jars). Soil history, fertilizers used, and other information you can give the lab about the soil are considered valuable. Apparently, results can be e-mailed free-of-charge. The report, typically 3 to 5 pages, can also be faxed for $1.00 per page. I’m guessing the only real cost is the shipping fee. The website is in the citations.
Penn State University Agricultural Analytical Services Laboratory has several options for submitting soil, water, compost, biosolids, and a number of other medias. After purchasing a testing kit from a Penn State Cooperative Extension or garden center, follow the instructions within the kit, and then mail your collected sample to the Penn State Laboratory. There is also the option of mailing your own container, but it must have an official submission form (found on their site) included with it. The laboratory will analyze the sample, and then send you a report with the analysis. The citation below is their official site and gives descriptions on what they are analyzing in each media. From personal experience, I took a class in college in which we submitted a soil test, and the report was returned in a reasonable amount of time and was informative.
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