Stop Tilling Your Soil! Go No-Till

Farmers are giving up the plow and doing what’s best for the life of their soil. The wise ones are at least, as they’ve learned the benefits of no-till farming.

What’s Wrong With Tilling

First, you have to understand soil. Good soil is made up of complex organisms and structure, just like a human city. Tilling the soil is the equivalent of destroying a city with a nuclear bomb. All of the living organisms are destroyed or displaced, and the infrastructure is no longer usable. Just as people don’t thrive in bombed out cities, plants don’t thrive in a soil structure that’s been destroyed. Continue reading “Stop Tilling Your Soil! Go No-Till”

How Nature Builds Soil, and You Can Too!

red-wigglers-in-compostWhen I study how nature builds its soil, here’s what I see.

In the fall, trees drop their leaves to the ground.  As they accumulate, different organisms go to work breaking them down including worms, nematodes, beetles, bacteria, fungi, and more.  Old branches fall from trees to the ground.  Fungi goes to work breaking these down, along with beetles, and other critters.  Birds, squirrels and other creatures sitting on branches drop their waste on top of this all adding a nitrogen component.  Other animals leave their waste to break down.  All of this goes into building fertile soil for the offspring of these trees and other plants to grow in.

Humans, on the other hand, go to great lengths sometimes to build soil,  making compost, adding amendments and fertilizers, tilling, turning, forking…you name it.  We work hard to build our soil while nature has a whole team of soil builders in place to do the work easily.  Why do we work so hard to do this? Continue reading “How Nature Builds Soil, and You Can Too!”