New soil analysis Laboratory
Within the framework of EU-funded project "Sustainable Development in Rural Areas of Uzbekistan" a new soil laboratory is installed at the Gulistan State University. The complete lab equipment that can monitor the soil fertility and plant health was supplied by Step Systems GmbH, Germany. Company owner, Mr. Braungardt supervised the installation of the laboratory during the period of March 5-6.
The main goal from the installation is to provide broad spectrum agriculture analysis to the farmers, and at the same time to contribute to preserve the environment.
The laboratory will offer the following services:
- Soil fertility analysis – availability of micro and macro nutrients
- Water analysis – pH and salinity
- Plant health analysis – nutrient uptake of the plants
Currently, thousands of land are released from cotton and wheat production and allocated for fruit and vegetable production – diversification of agriculture sector. Most of these lands are degraded from monoculture production.
In order to use these lands efficiently and grow high market value agriculture crops, farmers need the support of agriculture institutions and soil laboratories.
In Uzbekistan, it is not common that farmers do soil analysis due to number of reasons:
- Lack of professional laboratory services that can do broad spectrum analysis;
- Unavailability of professional soil analysis interpretation services.
In addition to laboratory installation, trainings with two different audiences (farmers and laboratory technicians) were organized by Mr. Braungardt.
On the 5th of March, a seminar was held for fruit growers, farmers and soil experts from the University where the topics on importance of soil analysis, plant nutrition basics, effects on plant growth and excessive surplus were covered.
For technicians specialized and more detailed information about operation of the supplied lab equipment, water as natural resource, its effect on salinity in the soil, necessity of efficient irrigation as well as options for determination of water content in the soil was presented.
At the end of the seminar, general recommendations had been delivered, particularly with regard to the specific conditions in Syrdarya region like high salinity, very high pH and only little rainfall.
A practical training with the university laboratory specialists and technicians as well as land soil fertilization students was organized on the 6th of March. The following major topics were covered:
- Demonstration of correct soil sampling in the field (2 demo samples in the campus), testing pH and salinity directly in the soil, discussion and evaluation of the direct measurement results in the open field.
- Sample preparation (extraction) of two demo samples, measuring pH and EC (laboratory method) and comparison with direct measurement in the morning.
- Usage of de-ionizing, drying oven, muffle furnace, sieving machine. Introduction in spectrophotometric measurement (e.g. measurement of nitrate of the tab water), spectrophotometric measurement of two demo samples (extracted in the morning) of macro- and micro-elements. Demonstration of multiple use functions of the spectrophotometer.
It is expected that laboratory will offer its services starting from April 2018.
For contacts please call:
Jamoliddin Qudratov, Project Regional coordinator in Syrdarya region, +998 93 501 50 12