I have two untouched square bales of straw. Shame on me! One new and dry, the other a year old and weathered since March this year. I'm going lay the old bale out first and cover with the new bale.
I do have a bunch of maple branches that I have laying around. They were cut down last fall as part of a tree removal. If I were to pile them in a lower area of my garden, then pile compost on them, would they be too fresh? I am composting the stump grindings with leaf mold, grass clippings, and kitchen scraps. Would it help to add a layer of fresh grass clippings over the branches before the compost?
. This system rings very true with me; the only thing I need overcome is the need to hoe and rake and fuss...and simply Do nothing...
Another conversation on another thread led me to this thought; what about soils so fungally or bacterially dominated that they chemically resist the move towards the balanced fungal:bacterial ratios our row crops want? This method seems ideal for a soil already near this median ideal, but isn't amendment a necessary "evil" in an unbalanced soil? Or should we be selecting crops that suit the soil?
Scott Reil wrote:Are you saying you don't think biology is part of our nutrient sink? Or that they are the primary agent in solubilizing mineralized nutrition? Those are pretty scientifically accepted processes...
Scott Reil wrote:
Joel, how does a plant accelerate weathering of trace minerals? Root exudates are basically sugar. How can sugar weather parent material?
For starters, a plant's dead roots can be eaten by a worm, which then rubs mineral grains against one another in its gut as that root is digested.
Sugar rarely stays sugar for long, in the soil. Fermentation often produces acids, which would help to dissolve minerals. I doubt it's nearly that simple, though.
I'm 100% certain there are microbes adapted to extracting scarce micronutrients from stone, and I bet there are a whole arsenal of clever mechanisms, for different circumstances.
It would not surprise me if the soil food web found a way to channel more calories to specialized weathering bacteria when the minerals they mine for became scarce: maybe the roots exude more sugar where they find ions a plant lacks, or maybe worms dig through that patch of soil more often. Maybe both.
Scott Reil wrote: referring to proven science as a "crackpot theory" might be an emotionally satisfying response, it does little to further a discussion or one's learning
I visited this farm 5 times and just cannot express the feeling as it is a paradise there
larry korn wrote:Do human colonies on the moon or Mars sound good to you?
Unlike the space colonies of science fiction, gaiomes do not promise a way out of our global crises. Only a sustainable civilization would have the competence build them, and then of course it would not need to. Not all that life does is driven by need, however, so Gaiome explores not just what we must do to make space accessible to large populations, but what we must become.
I patterned my garden last year on Emilia Hazelip's methods as shown in this video, and I found it to be very successful, in addition to being beautiful, functional, space-saving, soil-building, and unconventional!
Its good to see someone else doing Emilia's raised beds My experience was similar to Pj's in that I feel now the soil can regenerate on its own if it isn't abused and opened up like a big scar every year.how much skin could we sacrifice off our bodies every year?
We made the raised-bed spirals in soil that had previously been hayed for years. The project was hand dug after disking and we found 3 worms in maybe half an acre. Now there is life in every handful. We did add minerals.. Amitie and planters 2 and in some places we added compost on top of the already cardboarded and strawed beds in order to plant seeds which was my solution as in Emilia Hazelips video there is no mention of how to plant carrots for example.
The biggest problem is in doing nothing.... as its ingrained in me to dig and break up all the clods and feel the earth in my destructive fingertips ... hard to stop that thinking....
AS to the probelm with grass growing on around or in the sheet compost just add more cardboard and straw and the grass will remain weak and easy to manage.
the best thing about her video is that it teaches that anyone can garden and in these times an easy way to grow food,even in suburban backyards is most welcome I have made a few videos and teaching about this... not that I'm a great expert but more on learning as I go along.