microBIOMETER® Testing Procedure

1.GET THE microBIOMETER® APP

Available at: Google Play and iOS App Store


Create an account and log in. Press the camera button to analyze a test card.  

Pre-run the empty test card with the app before applying samples. Do this in the same light that you will analyze samples.

2. COLLECT & SIFT

 

Obtain a composite sample of MOIST soil from near the plant root zone. Using the included sifters and bag, shake to remove non-soil debris.

3. ADD EXTRACTION POWDER

  

Extraction vials pre-filled with reagents are included.

4. ADD WATER (or compost tea)

  

Fill the small capped measurer to add 9.5 ml of water or compost tea to the extraction vial. Use the mixer to quickly dissolve the powder.

5. MEASURE SOIL

Fill the soil sampler syringe to ~1 ml with sifted soil. Compress against your finger to 0.5 ml, remove any excess from the end, and eject into the extraction vial. 

The accuracy of your readings depends on the consistency of the soil volume and compaction.

6. MIX

Compacted soil (especially clay) must be broken up before mixing using the whisker probe. Place the vial in the provided holder in the kit, and rest the mixer in the mouth of the extraction vial.  

Mix for 30 seconds

7. SETTLE


After mixing, allow the liquid to rest for 

10 minutes. Soil particles will settle to the bottom, creating a microbial suspension above. 

8. SAMPLE MICROBES


Use a small pipette to draw up liquid from about half an inch below the surface. Avoid any floating debris and foam at the edges.

9. PLACE DROPS ON TEST CARD

PLACE DROPS ON TEST CARD
 
Carefully apply 3 drops (one drop at a time) to the sample window.


 

Carefully apply 3 drops (one drop at a time) to the sample window.


 

10. ANALYZE WITH THE APP

The microBIOMETER® app will ask you to scan the barcode, and then take a picture of the test card. Try to make the lighting as even as possible, avoiding shadows on the card. Edit sample details by touching each sample on the app. 


If your sample reads < 200 μg/g, add 3 more drops to the same sample window, and re-analyze the card. Change the number of drops used for the calculation by touching the sample and editing the sample details. 

 

Analyze your microbial biomass results

You can download your microbial biomass results from the PES Cloud App to an Excel Spreadsheet. 

 

There is an option to Download All Samples or Download Filtered Samples. To download filtered samples, simply fill in the text boxes for the data you want to import and hit enter. Then you can click on a header to sort your results ascending or descending. Clicking on each row will allow you to enter in additional information.


Once your data is in Excel, you can create useful reports, charts and graphs to track your soil's microbial biomass progress and determine what is working and what areas still need improvement.

How to prepare your samples

This video demonstrates how to prepare your soil and extract the microbes for analysis.  Please see detailed written instructions in the kit as we have modified the procedure.

How to use the microBIOMETER® app

This is a general guide for how to use the app.  We will be updating the instructions soon.