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Soil Sampling

Good decisions start with good data. Good fertility and nutrient management data start with taking good samples.

Our soil sampling service is performed by ACS’s full-time team of agronomy technicians who take over 15,000 samples a year on over 150,000 acres. In addition, they are responsible for the necessary field work associated with Electroconductivity (EC) mapping, grid sampling, GPS boundary mapping and tile line mapping.

To assure that our field work is performed consistently and to the standards necessary for our work, we have developed an internal technician certification program. All new technicians are trained the same way and must pass the certification process which includes actual field work as well as testing their aptitude for running equipment.

Whether you are sampling to stay in compliance with your state regulatory agency, sampling as part of a government funded program or sampling because you want to improve the fertility on your farm, we have a professional team who can do it quickly and accurately. Here is a link to our ACS soil sampling video.

Traditional Field, Soil, and Topography Mapping

Every map that accompanies an ACS nutrient management plan or custom fertility plan comes with a set of professionally prepared maps. We start with a technician who will visit the farm and “ground truth” the streams, waterways, field boundaries, wetlands, pasture and woodlands. They will indicate laneways, wells, sinkholes, ditches, or any other unique characteristics. From here the information goes to our “mapping group” where several GIS professionals are on hand to develop the maps. Once these maps are developed for your farm, we work to keep them updated when you add new ground, when boundaries change or when other circumstances warrant changing them.

Up to date maps are included with all annual CAFO plan updates, as well as with the spring fertility binder, and if necessary, fall manure spreading recommendations. We also offer complete farm overview maps which show the entire farm field layout on a poster-size map, allowing for improved communication among the staff.

Tile Line Mapping

Ever-increasing competition for land has led to higher and higher prices, so many farms are choosing to make the most of the land they do have. ACS can help map your fields in preparation for tile drainage or map the tile lines after they have been installed.

There are significant benefits of tile drainage including:

  • earlier and later access to fields
  • deeper root systems leading to reduced sensitivity to extreme wet or dry conditions
  • reduction in overland flow which leads to a loss of soil and soil nutrients.
  • increased crop yield
  • improved forage quality

If you do consider this option, be mindful of areas designated as wetlands and consult with your local NRCS office.

Electrical Conductivity (EC) Mapping

Soil EC varies with soil texture and organic matter. This service allows the farm to map soil type variation within fields at a level of precision and accuracy never before possible.

In-field electroconductivity data is collected through the use of Veris Technologies’ EC machine. After the data is compiled and statistically analyzed by GIS specialists, an ACS agronomist reviews the data for each field and consults with the farm to create subfield management zones. New EC maps will then be made available to the client on paper and electronically.