Archive for March, 2009

Kelp Help

Friday, March 27th, 2009

kelpMountains and land masses are born from the ocean in massive geological upheavals called diastrophism. Then, in nature’s typical cyclical fashion, the process of erosion through wind and rain ensures the gradual return of minerals and topsoil in a relentless flow back to the ocean. Many of the seventy (+) minerals that were present in the first cell that developed in the Precambrian Ocean, are no longer present in our soils. The ocean, however, retains this mineral motherlode and creatures and plant life which live within this elemental soup contain the broad-spectrum minerals so lacking on land! (more…)

The Essential Salt

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009

saltWars have been fought over salt, fortunes have been made and lost on the back of this mineralised crystal and nations have been brought to their knees through soil salting practices that effectively shut down food supply. Our modern, industrial salt is found everywhere in our food supply but generates far more problems than it does benefits. The “salting” of our soils continues but this time we did it ourselves in the name of fertilising to build yield. Whether an act of war or self inflicted, the outcome is similar. (more…)

Island to become a Biological Showpiece

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009

norfolk-islandLate last year I was sponsored by the Norfolk Island Government to travel to the island for a 2 day seminar. The opportunity arose following enthusiastic promotion by Simon Bigg, who is the Course Superintendent for the Norfolk Island Golf Club. Simon had returned home from our 4 day Certificate in Sustainable Agriculture, determined that this was essential information that should be shared with the islanders. He teamed up with Robin Adams, a local identity with a passion for all things sustainable, to make his vision a reality. Robin, who works for the Government, helped Simon frame and submit a proposal for funding that was eventually accepted. (more…)

Monitoring Myths

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009

plant-in-hand1Crop and soil monitoring is an integral part of the biological farming approach. In fact, it could be argued that the comprehensive and integrated testing technologies involved are what differentiates biological agronomy from conventional agronomy. I have argued for years that this proactive monitoring approach is infinitely superior to the simplistic “record and react” response of the chemical system. During 15 years in the field I have seen nothing that sways me from that opinion. The seven essentials for proactive response include the following: (more…)

South Africans Pioneer Nutrient-Dense Food

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009

giraffeTwo years ago, during one of my seminar tours to South Africa, a group from the Woolworths supermarket chain attended our four day Certificate in Sustainable Agriculture Course. Immediately following the course the principal of this privately owned organisation (not the Australian Woolworths) decided that all of his growers should learn to grow biologically, whether they liked it or not, and so began a revolution in large scale food production. It was a unique experience, over the next couple of years, to train growers who had not necessarily chosen to attend the course, but we managed to win all of them over and inspire some enthusiasm for this new, sustainable approach. (more…)