Soil Test


Our soil assessment generates population estimates of the major trophic groups of soil organisms:

  • Bacteria

  • Fungi

  • Protozoa

  • Nematodes

  • Microarthropods

We also count the various organism types within these groups. This allows an assessment of:

  • Organism diversity

  • Beneficial/aerobic vs. non-beneficial/anaerobic soil conditions

Nothing tells us more about the health of our soils than a survey of its microbiology -- what organisms are crawling around in there, and how many?


and send it with your samples to the address below.

For a sample of our Assessment Report, click here:

To Pay by Check:

Just include a check with your completed order form

To Pay by Credit Card, make a selection and hit the button

(requires PayPal account)

To download and print our Order Form, click here.

(Please enclose a completed form with each order)

... or call us, at (530) 648-0694

Pulling a Sample

The first thing you need is a coring tool – a large-size apple corer works well. Always collect samples when soil is moist, preferably when moisture has been present for several days. Clear any surface material from a small patch (a square-inch will do), and insert the corer. Twist and pull up, and you should have a 'core' of two to three inches. Shake it gently into a resealable plastic bag.

Choose a name for the sample (say, “orchard NW corner 1”), and write it: 

  • on the bag with a permanent marker 

  • on the sample submission form (link above)


Selecting Sample Locations

To examine biology in the root zone of a particular plant, sample from midway between its stem/trunk and dripline. Pull three cores from around the plant (or grouping of plants), and combine for a single sample.


To survey a broader area (pasture, crop field, garden, etc.) separate the area into zones – based on geography, prevailing conditions, variance in dominant plant type, plant health, etc. – and sample each area.

59334 Foothill Infographic PNG_TRANSPARE
59334 Foothill Infographic PNG_TRANSPARE

Shipping Your Samples

Arrange samples gently in a sturdy cardboard box. If there is extra space, add packaging material to prevent jostling en route. Add a completed order form with payment (or pay with credit card above), and ship overnight to:

    Foothill Biological
     Soil Health Services
    111 Bank St. #188
    Grass Valley, CA 95945

To help ensure prompt processing, alert us with an e-mail before shipping.
Any questions, just drop us a line or give us a call.