Category: Soil Biology

How to Sustainably Manage Agriculture?

Earthworms and soil in hand

Agriculture will always be here no matter what era it is and no matter the technological advancements. But the question will be about if we can apply sustainable practices in our individual farms. Farmers always need to increase yield, reduce input, and get more harvests without worrying about later consequences of some farming practices. The best way to sustainably manage agriculture is to use the bio-organics system. It imitates nature […]

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A Guide to Simple Worm Farming Techniques

Happy Tiger Worms (Courtesy of Timothy Musson)

Even novice gardeners are aware of worms as a driving force in the garden, and this is especially so for those no-till beds so popular in permaculture plots. For most of us, it’s no great revelation that soil thick with worms is also likely to be thick with plant growth. The reasons are many, but in the most basic terms, earthworms are great for aerating soils and transforming organic material […]

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Biological Fertiliser – Human Urine

Biological Fertiliser – Human Urine

Human urine provides an excellent source of nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium and trace elements for plants, and can be delivered in a form that’s perfect for assimilation. With a constant, year-round and free supply of this resource available, more and more farmers and gardeners are making use of it.

Urine is 95% water. The other 5% consists of urea (around 2.5%), and a mixture of minerals, salts, hormones and enzymes.

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Comfrey – BELIEVE the HYPE!

Comfrey – BELIEVE the HYPE!

There’s a plethora of info out there about comfrey but not much detail regarding establishing and managing a comfrey patch so I thought I would write an article to share my experience on this and how we grow comfrey as part of our fertility strategy in the market garden. When writing this article I could not resist to include some of the stories of this incredible plant and of the […]

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Save our Soils

Save our Soils

All terrestrial life depends on soil, directly or indirectly. Although our understanding of topsoil has grown by leaps and bounds over the past decades, we are still losing this invaluable resource at a frightening pace. Less than thirty per cent of the world’s topsoil remains in fair or acceptable condition. The fragility of this vital layer can be illustrated through a simple comparison: if one imagines the earth as an […]

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What are Effective Microorganisms?

Nadia_lawton_EM01

Effective Microorganisms (EM) are mixed cultures of beneficial naturally-occurring organisms that can be applied as inoculants to increase the microbial diversity of soil ecosystem. They consist mainly of the photosynthesizing bacteria, lactic acid bacteria, yeasts, actinomycetes and fermenting fungi. These microorganisms are physiologically compatible with one another and can coexist in liquid culture. There is evidence that EM inoculation to the soil can improve the quality of soil, plant growth […]

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Introducing Nitrogen Fixing Trees: Nature’s Solution to Curing N2 Deficiency

Casuarina

Nitrogen deficiency is a major challenge to world agriculture. This element is one of the most important nutrients for the growth and survival of plants. Roughly 78% of earth’s atmosphere consists of this gas essential to supporting life. However, plant life is unable to derive vital nutrients from its gaseous form. Instead, plants must pull nitrogen from their soil. The introduction of chemicals to compensate for nitrogen deficiency has created […]

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Food Sovereignty

pt01

‘Food sovereignty’ is fast becoming a lost concept; the right to have the knowledge and resources to grow our own food is an essential right. If we don’t have access to nutrient dense organic food, then where do we get the essential energy to heal our body, mind and spirit certainly not from the supermarket where the average ‘fresh food’, in Australia food often travels more than 1000klms from farm […]

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Soil Degradation: Another Carbon Story

Soil degradation can be a depressing topic. It is generally accepted that the decline in soil quality across Australia following European settlement has been extensive, and extreme in some areas. Soil degradation involves a reduction in soil quality, and this can refer to a decline in physical, chemical or biological properties, or to the actual loss of soil through erosion and transport away from the land. And these are commonly […]

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Nottinghill Forest Garden – 2012: Consolidation & Diversification – Part B

This is Part Three (B) of a series of Articles, that critically discuss’s the Nottinghill Forest Garden Project from Analysis – to Implementation – to Future Idea’s. Part One can be found here. Part Two can be found here. Part Three (A) can be found here. 2012: Consolidation & Diversification Spring Cover Cropping March: Late spring Water harvesting feature upgrades, complete by the first week of March, were installed just […]

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World Changer Interview Series – Nicholas Burtner Interviews Elaine Ingham

The world’s leading soil scientist and creator of the Soil Food Web, Dr Elaine Ingham, sits down to a fun and down to earth interview with Nicholas Burtner where she answers many questions of how she got to be where she is today, plus many other GMO and soil goodies.

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Part Two – Nottinghill Forest Garden – 2011: Project Commencement

This is Part two of a series of Articles, that critically discuss’s the Nottinghill Forest Garden Project from Analysis – to Implementation – to Future Idea’s. Part one can be found here Site Preparation Discussion “Mainframe Design” Although observation and basic design began in 2010, we did not commence the garden in earnest until January of 2011. After analyzing our site’s conditions and forming a basic long-term vision for the […]

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