He said that the farmers plant orchards of fruit-bearing plants, but due to lack of information, they are unable to get proper yield from the orchard. Therefore, it is very important to check the soil before planting orchards so that it can be determined whether the soil is right for planting the orchard or not. Tests also detect the composition and nature of the soil like acidicity, alkalinity and salinity, and if the soil is not favourable for sowing, improvements can be made to it accordingly.
He advised the farmers that if there is a difference in the soil of the field, then the soil sample should be taken from different fields. Do not take the soil sample from the place where the dung manure has just been poured or where the dung manure has previously been piled, he added. He said that farmers should not take samples from areas where chemicals or fertilizers have been recently used. Also, do not allow samples to come in contact with manure, ash, or dung and do not place samples on fertilizer bags. He said that samples should be air-dried in the shade. Many farmers heat the samples or dry them in the sun, which is incorrect, he added.
Head of the Department, Soil Science Department, Dr. Manoj Kumar Sharma, said that soil samples should be collected from the field properly for soil testing. The method of soil sampling for the orchard differs from the method of sampling for crops, he added. He said that first a two-meter-deep pit should be dug. After that, depths should be marked at 15, 30, 60, 90, 120, 150 and 180 centimeters from the surface to make the samples easy to collect. He said that the first sample should be at a depth of 15 cm from the ground surface, the second at a depth of between 15 to 30 cm, the third between 30 to 60 cm, the fourth between 60 to 90 cm, the fifth from 90 to 120 cm, sixth from 120 to 150 cm, and the seventh from 150 to 180 cm. Each sample should be approximately half a kilogram and all the samples should be stored separately.
He said that if any hard or rough layer is found in the ground, then its sample should be taken separately and the depth and thickness of the layer should be noted. Put all the samples in a clean cloth or polythene bag and label each sample carefully, he added. He said that the depth of the sample must be mentioned on the label and one label should be placed inside the bag and one pasted outside. Dr. Manoj Kumar said that the name of the farmer, the khasra number or name of the farm, the date of sampling, the means of irrigation, any problem of the field if any, complete correspondence address, the slope of the land and what type of plants are in the field or need to be planted should be mentioned on the information sheet to be sent along with the soil sample.