Leaf analysis in combination with soil testing brings out a clear picture of your crop's whole nutrition system. The laboratory results for each nutrient are compared against well-known optimum guide levels for each crop type providing a quick diagnosis on what could be limiting your yields and the corrective recommendations.
Ever wondered why one section of your crop is doing better than the other? Taking a leaf sample from the good and the bad area will identify any nutritional differences in your crop and help you get to the bottom of the problem, add this to soil samples from the same areas and you might get to the root of things. (Label these samples GOOD and BAD, and make sure that you take both leaf samples from the same crop stage).
Leaf analysis is also very useful for in-season testing of many field crops, to identify deficiencies that can then be rectified with foliar sprays before harvest, thereby increasing your yields.
The difficult aspect of plant analysis is that nutrient levels within the leaf tissue of a crop change throughout the growing season and vary as the plant ages. For example corn leaves have a very high concentration of nitrogen when they first emerge, but N concentration can decrease rapidly as the plant ages. Plants have the ability to move nitrogen from older tissue to younger tissue. In addition nutrient concentration tends to decrease as plants grow because nutrients are being diluted by plant tissue as plants get older. To take into account this variability sufficiency levels have been determined for specific plant parts in specific crops at critical stages in growth. Therefore the sampling stage at which you take the sample and the type of leave that you take is most critical.
In general for seedlings – the whole plant is required – snipped 1 inch from the ground. For most mature plant you need to select the youngest most recently matured leaf. Randomly select about 40-50 plants throughout the sample area and select the desired plant part. Use clean hands and clean tools, and collect in a clean paper bag or CropNuts sample bag. We need two large handfuls of leaves. Dust/soil/residue covered plant parts should be avoided. If leaves are dusty, brush gently with a dry soft brush. Do not rinse or wash plant parts as some elements can be leached out. For best results allow sample to air dry before sending or dispatch immediately to the lab. Never store in a plastic bag, the sample will arrive at the lab as a fermented mush that cannot be tested.
Contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org to get the correct sampling stage for your crop.
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Location: Cooper Centre, Kaptagat Rd, Loresho, Nairobi, Kenya