Several different tools – such as an auger, sampling tube or spade may be used in taking samples. Important: Use a clean plastic bucket to collect and mix samples, a metal bucket may contaminate the sample for trace element analysis.
If a sampling tool is not available, use a spade to dig a small hole with a vertical side and take a uniform slice of soil about 20 mm wide to the required depth. Break up clods, mix thoroughly and spread the total sample evenly on a
clean surface. Divide into quarters, discard the two diagonal quarters and remix the remains, continue this reduction process to achieve the amount.
Select an area to be sampled and take cores at regular intervals as per the relative pattern diagram on the reverse
side of this sheet. Cores should be taken from sites of average growth. For plant sampling, sample halfway between the stem and dripline. Do not sample bare ground unless it predominates, or
patches of very good growth such as near urine and dung clumps, or within 10 m of sheds, tracks and fence lines.
Thoroughly mix sample cores in a plastic bucket.
Label each sample bag with the relevant sample and crop details, mixing and preparation, then place in the sample bag (approximately 200g), immediately after sample core collection.