Archive for September, 2008

A Management Approach to High-Production Sustainable Agriculture.

Thursday, September 25th, 2008

Sometimes it can be interesting to chart the birth of an idea. During the preliminaries to a seminar series with American author / consultant, Gary Zimmer, I inadvertently cast myself in the role of training provider, facilitating Farmbis refunds for seminar patrons. This seemingly simple process evolved into a marathon, comprising hundreds of working hours negotiating the difficult terrain surrounding six separate State Government agencies and satisfying their varying requirements. There are often unanticipated benefits from the most tedious of exercises, and in this case I was forced to consider our approach in a different light to help qualify for the subsidy. (more…)

The Nutri-Tech Triple 10™ Range

Wednesday, September 24th, 2008

Market leaders in sustainable agriculture, Nutri-Tech Solutions, have allocated substantial research funds to the development of a revolutionary, new breed of liquid fertilisers. The Nutri-Tech Triple Ten™ range combines the best of conventional inputs with cutting-edge organics, to provide a unique high-production option for both fruit and vegetable producers and broadacre farmers. A base formulation has been appropriately modified to produce a crop-specific range, which now includes individual blends for a wide variety of different crops, ranging from avocados to zucchinis. Triple Ten™ is a breakthrough in liquid nutrition. (more…)

Milestones in Agriculture

Friday, September 19th, 2008

In the mid 19th century, German chemist, Justus von Liebig, later dubbed “the father of chemical agriculture”, analysed the ashes of a plant and deduced that, as the major elements present were nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (The N-P-K of modern agriculture), then these must be the principle elements required for plant growth. Before von Liebig’s discovery it was believed that humus was the major source of nourishment for plant growth. Von Liebig attacked the humus theory vehemently and was able to successfully convince European academics that his simplistic three-element nutrition plan was the “one true way” for any rational scientific community. Von Liebig’s “Chemistry in its Application to Agriculture” was to have such an impact that it still stands as the turning point, where scientific agriculture jettisoned the concept of working with natural processes and cycles, in favour of planned intervention and man-made solutions. Big business, as could be expected, was never far from the state-of-play. (more…)

Trace Element Essentials

Friday, September 19th, 2008

This article focuses on trace elements. Iron, zinc, copper, manganese, boron, molybdenum and cobalt will be covered in depth. The interrelationship between these elements will be considered, as will their respective functions, the conditions creating deficiencies and the symptoms of these deficiencies. The best sources of each trace element will also be listed. (more…)

Founding Fathers – Ream’s Dream

Friday, September 19th, 2008

The visits of US fertility experts, Dr Arden Andersen and Dr Phil Wheeler, to Australia have generated tremendous interest in their unique approach to high-production, sustainable agriculture. Both consultants describe themselves as exponents of the Reams/Albrecht/Callahan approach to fertility management. The triumvirate to whom they refer comprises Dr Carey Reams, Dr William Albrecht and Dr Philip Callahan. These three pioneers are central figures in what has become the most powerful sustainable push in late 20th century agriculture. Alternative agriculture has never sailed so close to the mainstream. Vested interests have always successfully contained and controlled what they have regarded as “organic fringe dwellers”, but a burgeoning grassroots movement, led by conventional growers, appears to be changing this power base. (more…)

Founding Fathers – The Albrecht Heritage

Friday, September 19th, 2008

Dr William Albrecht was above all a student of nature, and perhaps his greatest credential related to the fact that his system worked successfully with, rather than against, nature. As a scientist, writer and educator, Albrecht worked tirelessly to empower the farmer with the knowledge required to increase “real” fertility via soil balance and appropriate nutrition. Unlike earlier resistance fighters like Austrian Rudolf Steiner, Albrecht’s approach remained practical and accessible. While Steiner philosophised about cosmic forces and spiritual influences in agriculture (alienating more than he converted), Albrecht set about delineating actual measurable parameters of fertility. (more…)

The Secret of Calcium Success

Thursday, September 18th, 2008

American author/consultant, Gary Zimmer, has made an important contribution to high-production agriculture with his book “The Biological Farmer”. The book summarises thirty years of research and practical experience and includes several new findings not previously considered in this arena. Perhaps the most significant of these relates to the efficiency and performance of calcium – the king of all nutrients. (more…)

Nutrition Farming® is the Approach For Your Future

Thursday, September 18th, 2008

The Nutrition Farming® approach is being developed as the industry standard for increased yield of nutrient-dense foods, obtaining longer shelf-life and achieving premium prices. Nutrition Farming® is all about working from the soil up and improving the natural balance – mineral and biological. (more…)

Our Top 13 Yield-Building Tips for Sustainable Agriculture

Thursday, September 18th, 2008

1) Split nitrogen applications:

Making smaller applications more often is always more productive. In research involving 250 kg of urea per hectare. The difference between a single 250 kg application and 10 x 25 kg applications applied over several months was a 105% yield increase. Note: Single nitrogen applications in excess of one bag of urea or two bags of ammonium sulphate per acre are destructive. The microbes, which normally extract nitrogen from organic carbon or fix nitrogen from the atmosphere, are shut down when chemical nitrogen is applied excessively. The loss of this ‘natural nitrogen’ can begin a downward spiral, where more nitrogen is required to achieve the same result. (more…)

NTS Soluble Humates™

Wednesday, September 10th, 2008

Humic acid is arguably the most important input in agriculture because it can compensate for the loss of humus in our soils (down from 5% to 1.5% in just three generations). NSW research sponsored by the National Bank, in conjunction with the CSIRO, highlighted the fact that organic matter levels are the principle determinant of profitability in agriculture. (more…)