MU Extension has publications on agriculture, natural resources, lawn and garden, home and consumer life, nutrition and health, families, community and leadership development, business and careers, emergency management and other topics. Prices vary by publication. 

Soil testing

Basic soil testing analyzes nutrient content and fertility status. Results include fertilizer and lime recommendations. Additional tests are available for nutrient management plans, environmental issues, potting mixes, compost, manure and water usage. Each sample should contain about 1½ cups of dry soil from 6 to 7 inches deep. Consult our soil testing publications for specific instructions. Results are typically provided within two weeks.

Effective Jan. 1, 2018, the testing fee is $25 per sample. A soil auger or probe for taking samples is available for loan with a $100 returnable deposit. The soil sample should consist of 15-20 cores to a 6-inch depth from a maximum of 20 acres. We recommend bringing at least one pint of soil to our office, along with field, lawn or garden information for helping complete the necessary paperwork.

Hay testing

Mailing materials and probes, or hay samplers, for forage testing by commercial labs are available as a convenience to our clients. Probes/samplers are recommended to get a proper sample.

A hand-crank or electrically-driven probe for taking forage samples is available for loan with a $100 returnable deposit. Hay samples should consist of a total of at least 10 cores taken from the rounded side of 5 large round bales or from the end of 10 small square bales for each lot of hay.

Canner gauge tests

Testing for dial-type pressure canner lids is available. Dial-type gauges should be tested annually to ensure accuracy and prevent bacterial contamination of preserved foods. (Testing is not necessary for weighted gauges.)

Testing is free and is available during normal business hours. We recommend new or replacement gauges also be tested for accuracy.

Private pesticide applicator training

MU Extension provides private pesticide applicator training for producers as required for Missouri Department of Agriculture certification. Individuals must purchase or bring a copy of MU Extension publication M87, Private Pesticide Applicator Reference Manual, to the training. Manuals may be purchased at the extension center.

The Private Pesticide Applicator Training is for producers of agricultural commodities, 18 years or older, wishing to obtain or renew their applicator’s license in order to buy and apply restricted-use pesticides on their own land. The license is good for 5 years and may be renewed.

In Webster County as of July 1, 2017, the price for a new or renewed Private Pesticide Applicator license is $25 per person. Training is available by appointment during normal business hours, beginning at 9 a.m. or 1 p.m.

Distance education test proctoring

MU Extension proctors tests for students enrolled in Mizzou Online courses.

Proctoring is available by appointment during normal business hours. The student should have their instructor contact Donna Eldridge at 417-859-2044 or by email at to arrange mailing of written exams or password access for online exams.

There is no charge for proctoring for University of Missouri students. Cost for proctoring students with other colleges or universities, or for individuals needing certification associated with their business, is $10 per hour, with a $10 minimum.

Meeting room rental

Meeting space at the MU Extension office is available to local community groups.

Room capacity is 48 persons at tables or 60 persons in conference seating. A projection screen, TV with DVD player, and dry-erase board are provided, and Internet access is available by arrangement.

There is no fee for 4-H or Family Community Education (FCE) groups. Other not-for-profit groups will be charged a $25 rental fee per day, or portion thereof, with a maximum 30-day advanced booking. Contact Donna Eldridge at 417-859-2044 to reserve the room.

Professional consultation

Faculty experts are available to answer specific questions and provide professional advice for individual situations. Fees may be charged for some consultation services. Call our office to speak to a faculty member or make an appointment.

Plant and insect identification

Plant and insect samples may be brought to the extension office for identification or disease diagnosis. Recommendations for managing pests, weeds and diseases are provided.

Plant disease diagnosis

Plant disease, insect and weed diagnosis is available for field crops, ornamentals, vegetables, fruits and turfs.

Educational opportunities

Single- and multi-session educational programs cover topics in agriculture, natural resources, lawn and garden, home and consumer life, nutrition and health, families, community and leadership development, business and careers, and emergency management. Fees vary by program. Customized training is available.

Contact 417-859-2044 to arrange for training or programs on specific topics.

Disaster planning and recovery

Education and technical assistance to prepare and respond to disasters are available to individuals and families, local governments, businesses, schools and organizations.

Contact Conne Burnham at 573-884-5254 for more information.

Veterinary lab services

MU Extension accepts test samples for the MU Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Lab. Fees vary by test.

Consultation for community groups

MU Extension provides assistance to community organizations in obtaining federal 501(c)3 nonprofit status, strategic planning, board and resource development, organizational management, working with volunteers and enhancing teamwork.

Small business development assistance: Transforming Missouri businesses

MoSBTDCMU Extension business specialists provide assistance to those wanting to start, maintain or expand a business through the Missouri Small Business and Technology Development Centers (MO SBTDC), and via Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (MO PTAC), which guide firms interested in doing contract business with federal, state and local governments. MO SBTDC specialized services include assistance with technology and product commercialization, international trade, market research and energy and environmental issues.