One of the best things about writing for this site is that occasionally, other gardeners will write in with their excellent garden tips. This was the case with Kathy Ormiston, a landscape designer and landscape gardener in the San Francisco Bay Area (south bay region). Kathy was kind enough to share a tip about an extremely inexpensive soil test that she has done via mail from the University of Massachusetts. How cheap is cheap? Ten. Dollars. Seriously, people, if you get a soil test, and find out that you’re cool on phosphorus for a few years or that the reason your such-and-such keeps keeling is that your pH is all wonky, then you just saved the cost of the test.