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Visual indicators of soil condition

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Item 9 of 17
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Indicator 7 – small, dark green leaves

What do you see and when?

  • Small, stunted or dark green leaves on sub-clover plants
  • Observed in early spring when clover is adequately growing

What could this indicate?

  • Phosphorus deficiency. Only when phosphorus deficiency is extreme do leaf symptoms appear
  • Slow and poor growth of pasture occurs from “hidden hunger” of all nutrients before appearance of leaf symptoms. Sub-clover leaves with adequate fertility should be the size of a 20 cent piece.

What test can I do to confirm?

Pictured: Hand-operated soil sampler.
  • Soil test with reference to phosphorus
  • Test strips of phosphorus fertiliser

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