5th: How to Collect Soil Samples in a Golf Course? – Soil Sampling

06.06.17 | Tuesday | Fifth day of internship 

I experienced one of the biggest challenges in my life today!

I thought it will be my usual day but it changed when the superintendent gave some ziplock bags and a soil probe to do soil sampling. He also asked me to get a rental cart from the clubhouse. 

So I went to the Clubhouse and asked the cartender, kuya Nestor, for a cart. 

I never had a car before so I don’t have any clue about driving. But today, I drove around the golf course by myself. Yes. By myself. I was really out of my comfort zone. 

A girl, with no driving skills and just her 5th day on the course, was going to drive around the course to collect soil samples.

Good thing that I was already familiar with the golf course and I have learned the names of the holes during the course set-up training. 

Still, I had no idea where to start so I went to the 1st assistant, Kuya Popoy, for guidance. He showed me the proper way to use the soil probe and the proper soil sampling. After that, I got the soil samples by myself. 

Soil Sampling

What is Soil Sampling? It is the method of collecting a soil sample that will represent an area and it  will be sent to the laboratory for analysis. 

How to collect soil samples?  

1. Using the soil probe, you will dig up a small portion of the soil. 

2. Get the lower portion of the soil profile and set the the darker portion aside.

3. Replace the dug up area with a new sand. 

4. Return the grass and the darker portion of the sand so it will look like nothing happened. 

Let me show you how soil sampling is done.

Note: You should collect soil samples   from areas that have same elevation, same management and soils with similar characteristics. 

I was asked to get a soil sample from each tee (All in all, I got 18 samples from the 18 tees). I mixed them altogether and removed any organic matter (small roots, grass clippings). This mixture is the the composite sample. 

The composite sample is air-dried (don’t expose it to heat) for 2-3 days until it is thoroughly dried. The composite sample was sent to the laboratory for analysis. 

It was a very challenging task but it was very fun. I’m a soil science major and doing soil sampling on the golf course made me confident about my skills. 

I really love being out of my comfort zone because I know that I’ m learning something new. 🙂

Thank you for reading! 

Always look on the greener side,

The Agrotraveler

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