We are excited to announce the launch of our free soil health program with the support of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service! Open to farmers, community gardeners, and home gardeners, this program will provide up to $1200 per site for soil testing. We hope to rebuild Chicagoland’s soil to address key issues for urban growers cultivating food in an urban setting. Improving soil health = improving community health! For more information, reach out to so**@au********.org

At the time we are no longer accepting requests for soil testing. Sign up to our newsletter and follow us on social media to receive the latest updates for future soil testing opportunities.
Advocates for Urban Agriculture is celebrating soil as a living relative alongside the growers who nourish the land through our end of year fundraising campaign, “Nourishing Roots.” Celebrate with us and donate to sustain healthy food systems in Chicago! As a Black, Indigenous and People of Color, queer, disabled grower-led, food justice advocacy organization in Chicago, we invest in under-resourced BIPOC-led urban farms and community gardens who are at the forefront of transforming our current food system. Whether it be a one-time or monthly donation, no matter how small of an amount, our goals are to:
  • Build a monthly sustainable base of supporters that care about earth stewardship, urban growers and access to safe food.
  • Continue providing growers with soil quality results, analysis, and soil health education for years to come.
  • Collectively, revive contaminated soil.

Your support is the seed that starts it all. 100 people donating $25 makes it possible for AUA to provide 5 growers the soil quality assessments and remediation support needed to grow food safely and revive the land. With 25 monthly donors giving at least $25 and 1,000 people donating $25 or more, we can transform our neighborhoods.

This pilot soil health program is designed for farms and market gardens on the South and West side of Chicago (or Cook County). We are doing our last round of testing: the first one was completed in the spring and now the second cycle is open again for the fall. Please complete the form to be considered for testing. We will be selecting 30 participants for the second cycle. Soil samples will be taken in the month of October and early November with the intention to receive your results in late December and/or January (depending on when your samples were submitted).

Through the program you will receive free soil testing with A&L Great Lakes, Logan Labs, and Stat Analysis. Funding for this program is being provided by an Equity in Conservation Cooperative Agreement through the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Services, Outreach & Partnerships Division. Please check out NRCS programs for additional support services and resources.

Any questions, reach out to so**@au********.org

Check out soil resources below:

Dr. Akilah Martin and Dr. Shemuel Israel demonstrate

how to take a soil sample