A physical soil test identifies the texture and structure of soil, giving insight on its suitability for agriculture or building. This information is important for making effective land-use decisions.

Understanding soil composition is important to determine the suitability of a piece of land for agricultural, environmental, and engineering uses. Soil’s physical characteristics determine the amount of water, air, and nutrients available to any plants growing in it, influence the chemical and biological properties of the soil, and impact its stability.


Physical soil texture and soil structure 

Two of the most important properties of soil are texture and structure. Soil texture refers to the soil’s relative proportion of sand, silt, and clay. This affects the soil’s ability to hold onto water and nutrients (cation exchange capacity or CEC). Soil structure refers to the aggregation of sand, silt, and clay into blocks of soil in various sizes and shapes, which has a significant influence on pore space, and how easily water, air, and roots can move through the soil. 

Testing texture, structure and other physical properties of soil is especially important for agricultural purposes to determine crop suitability and to predict how the soil will respond to both environmental conditions and management efforts such as adding fertilizer.


Testing physical properties of soil

Element’s soil testing laboratories provide comprehensive testing services to help you determine the physical characteristics of your soil. Our experts are adept at applying a variety of testing methods, such as particle size distribution (PSA), to provide you with accurate and reliable results that are right the first time.  

We test soils for their texture, structure, and many other physical characteristics, including soil color, consistency, particle density, bulk density, pore space, Atterberg limits, and soil permeability.


The Element advantage

Element’s diverse range of soil testing services includes testing for organic and inorganic components, microbiological testing, and other essentials like testing for nutrients and salinity. These capabilities, coupled with our vast industry knowledge, make us the ideal testing partner for all your environmental testing projects.  

For more information about testing the physical properties of soil, or to speak with one of our experts, contact us today. 

Our team of over 9,000 Engaged Experts in North America, Europe, The Middle East, Australia, Asia and Africa are ready to help you.