Urban Soils Lab at Brooklyn College

Our lab is open. Samples can be mailed in, or you can pre-arranged a drop-off for large batches by sending us an e-mail.

The affordable soil-testing service is offered as part of Brooklyn College’s commitment to community service. We accept samples from all states within the United States. By requesting this service, the customer agrees that the data may be used for statistical analysis and research purposes. The customer’s identity and address will be kept confidential.

  • Collect soil samples following Sampling Instructions (PDF).
  • Download and complete the Submission Form (DOC) for each sample. Print your e-mail clearly—that is how we submit your results. Clearly label each sample bag in your package so that they match the respective submission forms. Each sample requires a separate submission form (one sample per submission form). Calculate the payment amount and indicate method of payment.
  • Print the completed submission form(s) and place in a package with the soil sample(s), along with a check or money order made out to Brooklyn College Departments (ESAC). Cash is also accepted if dropping off in person.

Results will be e-mailed to you within two weeks, depending on the requested parameters.

Tests, Test Packages, and Fees

Test Packages (Recommended for urban gardeners)

  • Soil Lead Screening and pH Test—$20. Soil samples are screened for lead and tested for pH.
  • Basic Soil Quality Test—$55. Soil samples are tested for (1) pH; (2) salt content; (3) soil class; (4) NPK levels; (5) lead screening); and (6) organic content.

Single Tests

  • Lead XRF screening—$10. Recommended for a screening of contamination.
  • pH Test—$10. The pH is determined using a 1:1, V:V method.
  • Soil Class (Texture)—$10. Soils are categorized according to USDA soil textural classifications using the Jar Method.
  • Soluble Salts—$10. Total soluble salts is determined using a 1:2, V:V electrical conductivity method.
  • NPK kits—$10. N-P-K kits assign the levels of nutrients (high, medium or low).
  • Organic content—$12. The percent of organic matter in soil or compost is determined by the loss on ignition method.

Forms and Instructions

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Brooklyn. All in.