Gardening Help Desk

The Master Gardener Diagnostic Desk
(385)468-4828 |

The Master Gardener Diagnostic Desk hours have ended for the 2023 season. However, you may still call, email, or drop off specimens.

Phone calls to our hotline (385)468-4828
will go to voicemail. Callers may leave a message and we will respond within 5 business days. 
Email questions will be answered within 5 business days. Please attach photos which are high resolution and very clear. Close-ups of plants and/or arthropods as well as photos of an entire plant or garden from a distance are very helpful.

Specimens may be dropped off during regular business hours 8AM - 5PM, Mon-Fri and we will do initial analysis and/or identification of your plant or insect within 5 business days. All specimens should be bagged or in a sealed container. Turf specimens should be about 4" deep X 4" long X 4" wide and have living, green plants included. Please wait for 2 days after a rain or irrigation before digging the specimen (we cannot do much with muddy soil).Tree/shrub specimens should be limited to 12-inch pieces with living portions attached. 

Soil testing: We do not do laboratory tests at the Salt Lake County Extension Office. We can make observational assessments and look for pests with microscopes if necessary. For complete analysis, soil samples need to be delivered to the USU Analytical Laboratories in Logan. We do carry zipper bags, shipping boxes and submission forms for the public at no charge. Many of your soil questions may be answered by referring to the lab website:

If preferred, for a small fee, you may send plant pest and disease specimens to the Utah Plant Pest and Disease Laboratories in Logan. Please see the links at the bottom of this page for more information.

For all other inquiries, please email

We will be opening the Master Gardener Diagnostic Desk again in April of 2024. Please check back for updates.

USU Extension office:
Salt Lake County Government Center
2001 South State Street #S1-300
Salt Lake City, UT 84190

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