Omaha Conference on Cover Crops and Soil Health – Presentation Resources

Posted by & filed under Plant Systems, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Soil Rehabilitation, Structure, Water Contaminaton & Loss.

Recently, I had the honor of attending a national conference on cover crops and soil health. The conference was held in Omaha, Nebraska on February 17th to the 19th, sponsored primarily by the Howard G Buffett foundation and SARE (Sustainable Agriculture and Research Education). The attendees represented university specialists, seed vendors, farmers, non-profit groups, and… Read more »

Bhaskar Save, the Gandhi of Natural Farming

Posted by & filed under Biodiversity, Commercial Farm Projects, Compost, Demonstration Sites, Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Fungi, Plant Systems, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Soil Erosion & Contamination, Soil Rehabilitation, Structure, Trees, Village Development, Water Contaminaton & Loss.

Sage of a minimalist farming system based on non-violence and all of nature’s biodiversity that produces in abundance with no chemical inputs. by Bharat Mansata Bhaskar Save, acclaimed ‘Gandhi of Natural Farming’, turned 92 on 27 January 2014, having inspired and mentored 3 generations of organic farmers. Masanobu Fukuoka, the legendary Japanese natural farmer, visited… Read more »

Under Cover Farmers (videos)

Posted by & filed under Commercial Farm Projects, Plant Systems, Soil Biology, Soil Conservation, Soil Rehabilitation, Structure, Water Conservation.

While researching cover cropping, I came across the video above, featuring an explanation from the Rodale Institute (U.S.) of their “No Till Roller Crimper” which is used to lay down the cover crop in a no till farming environment. Another video I uncovered (below) may be of interest to those pursuing permaculture practice in the… Read more »

Hill Country Permaculture: The Way of the Fox (Central Texas)

Posted by & filed under Food Forests, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Plant Systems, Soil Composition, Soil Rehabilitation, Structure, Trees, Water Conservation, Water Harvesting.

Foxes are renowned for being clever and nimble — elusive when sought as prey and very hard to keep out of a chicken coop when on the prowl. Many years ago, sitting at dinner with some long time "Hill Country" (AKA central Texas USA) farmers, I learned something about foxes that’s stuck with me ever… Read more »

OrBio – a Cover Crop Strategy for Market Gardens

Posted by & filed under Commercial Farm Projects, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Land, Plant Systems, Soil Conservation, Soil Rehabilitation, Structure, Water Conservation.

A bug’s eye view of the sky, from a stand of cover crop Photo © Craig Mackintosh A recent post by Australian permaculture aid worker, Miles Durand, writing from Lesotho, reminded me to share a method of growing vegetable crops alongside cover crops that I learned when I studied organic biological horticulture many years ago…. Read more »

Soil, not Dirt – Dr Elaine Ingham Talks Soil Microbiology

Posted by & filed under Compost, Fungi, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Soil Rehabilitation, Soil Salination, Structure.

Dr. Elaine Ingham talks about soil fertility and the role of soil microbial life. Dr. Ingham is a world-renowned soil biologist who pioneered many of the currently used biological soil amendment techniques and pioneered the testing of soil microbial life as an indicator of soil and plant health. Dr. Ingham is the Chief Scientist at… Read more »

Wildlife Friendly Gardening Begins Beneath Us

Posted by & filed under Soil Biology, Soil Conservation, Soil Rehabilitation, Structure.

Why dig? Why turn over tonnes of topsoil year after year. We know permanent soil has properties that annual crops need and which sustains bio diversity. Why disturb and destroy the goodness that nature provides? Salad, herbs, onions, garlic, brassica, peas, beans, and ornamentals are examples of plants that can be cultivated without digging. One… Read more »

A Computer Geek Starts a Garden, Part II – We Are Chlorophyll Managers

Posted by & filed under Biodiversity, Compost, Economics, Food Plants - Annual, Food Plants - Perennial, Fungi, Global Warming/Climate Change, Health & Disease, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Soil Rehabilitation, Structure.

Last night I ate a couple of dozen cherry tomatoes from my just-getting-started garden. A little pepper and salt and I was in tomato heaven. I was expecting them to taste a whole lot better than the supermarket ‘tomatoes‘ I’m otherwise forced to consume, and I was not at all disappointed. Indeed, every cell of… Read more »

Cover Crops Solutions Chart

Posted by & filed under Animal Forage, Compost, Plant Systems, Soil Biology, Soil Composition, Soil Conservation, Soil Rehabilitation, Structure, Water Conservation.

Click pic to download PDF As most readers of this site will recognise, nature always works to protect the soil from from wind and water erosion — by covering it with living foliage. In doing so, the cycle of life and death continues, increasing the soil’s fertility over time. Alas, many ‘modern’ gardeners have allowed… Read more »