Tuesday, February 14, 2017

soil health

The fourth annual soil health conference sponsored by the Sustainable Farming Association runs this week in Fergus Falls. I can't go and am really missing it. We have had someone, generally me, there each year as this is critical stuff. Attention to soil health, to the multitude of microscopic critters and plants that should be in the soil, is key to so much. Those critters grow plants which cover the soil and provide food for animals and us. Soil critters stabilize the soil, keeping it from washing and blowing away. And they sequester carbon, something all of us need to understand as we try to stabilize our climate that we have been burning so much carbon into. Sequestering happens as organic matter in the soil is built, and building that requires living roots in the soil at all times of year. It requires regular cover crops featuring a variety of species and it is likely to mean more farming with perennial plants instead of annual. These things would be revolutionary in agriculture and the pity is that so few know about them.

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