Posts Tagged ‘sustainable agriculture’

Shifting Paradigms – Navigating the Brave New World of Biology

Monday, August 22nd, 2011

biological-farmingColin Hamilton and his partner, Beverley, have embarked on a journey of discovery. They farm 3000 acres near Narromine, in the central west of NSW. They have cropped cereals, cotton and legumes on the farm for the past fifteen years using the standard range of farm chemicals and acid fertilisers. After attending seminars by some of the leaders in the burgeoning biological agriculture movement, Col decided to initiate changes on his farm. (more…)

Monthly Growing Tips

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

1) Build CaBSi Into Every Program – No, I’m not suggesting that you offer more support to the taxi industry! It’s about a trio of key minerals that should be an integral part of your crop nutrition. Calcium (Ca) boron (B) and silicon (Si) are synergists and together they represent proactive cell strengthening that will reduce both disease and insect pressure. The two minerals that can effectively create a protective barrier (a strong cell wall) are calcium and silica and both of these minerals need boosting in most of the crops with which we work. The key to harnessing their protective power is boron (more…)

Surviving The Big Wet – Countering Climate Change

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

storm over agricultureThe spectre of global warming often evokes images of widespread drought but this is not the case. The predictions have always been for changes in precipitation. Some areas will receive more rainfall and others less. Unfortunately, the major broadacre cereal belts around the globe seem destined to become drier while many tropical and subtropical regions will become much wetter. In my region of SE QLD we have had the wettest year in recorded history and the torrential rain continues unabated amidst widespread flooding (an area the size of Germany and France combined, is currently underwater). (more…)

Sustainability Without Sacrifice

Monday, January 31st, 2011

sustainable farming, crops grown without chemicalsIt is a common misconception that any increase in sustainability will inevitably involve sacrifice, with the assumption that it will cost more or yields will fall! However thousands of farmers around the globe have proven that what is best for the planet is also best for the pocket. Cutting edge biological strategies are delivering the ultimate win/win. You can build humus and reduce chemical inputs while increasing production and profitability by working with nature rather than against her. (more…)

Record Breaking Biological Farming Course – Upcoming Dates

Friday, August 27th, 2010

Ten years ago, author/consultant, Graeme Sait, researched and developed the first Certificate in Sustainable Agriculture course and, along with a team of highly credentialed Agronomists, presented the information to a group of fifty farmers. Since then this four day learning opportunity, supported by a 360 page manual, has gone on to become the leading course of its type in the world. Thousands of growers and consultants have now been trained in four continents and the accolades have been many. The former head of the USDA organic division has referred to it as “the best course I have ever attended” and the CEO of Woolworths in South Africa has called it “essential training for all food producers on the planet”. Attendees regularly rank it at 10/10 on their post course evaluation forms and this unique educational event is invariably sold out at every sitting. (more…)

Five Keys to Success in Organic Farming

Friday, August 27th, 2010

organic farming1) Lift Your Quality – Organics has a reputation for idealism, which can be good motivation but bad business. Consumers should get more than chemical-free when they buy organic. They should get forgotten flavours and extended shelf life to justify the premium, and this is all about nutrition. If you are deficient in zinc or boron, all of the compost in the world won’t correct that deficiency. You need soil and tissue tests and good advice to sponsor a quality-driven, precision nutrition approach that will bring the customer back for more. NTS are world leaders in soil and plant nutrition. (more…)

The Other Side of Weeds

Tuesday, August 24th, 2010

weed sprayerAn article by Sonja Burger. Weeds have suffered from a bad reputation for centuries, and often undeservedly so. Yes, they can reduce crop yields and quality, harbour pests and diseases, taint milk, contaminate wool and poison livestock. But, they are often not given credit for colonizing bare soil and preventing erosion, for loosening up hard soil and transporting nutrients from the sub-soil.  Their role in scavenging and conserving nutrients such as nitrogen and sulfur, which might otherwise leach away, is often ignored. (more…)

The Top Ten Biological Farming Strategies

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

In this article we will look at practical implementation of biological farming principles focusing upon the strategies that are proven to deliver greater yield and quality while reducing the need for chemical intervention. The following summary can serve as a box ticking audit of your progress along the biological path.  (more…)

A Passion For Healthy Food – Interview with Matt Biggs

Wednesday, July 21st, 2010

matt biggs is a biological farmerNorfolk Island is a 10,000 hectare patch of Pacific paradise with rich volcanic soils, idyllic national parks and glorious beaches. The people of this island share the strong sense of community that is so sadly missing elsewhere in this trouble world. There is no imported fresh produce permitted here so the food producers on the island literally become stewards of their community’s health and many of the local growers have recognised the significance of their role. I have visited Norfolk Island several times over the last two years to educate the local producers about the benefits of biological agriculture. (more…)

A Problem Solving Case Study

Friday, July 2nd, 2010

biologically farmed ginger

A system dominated by chemical solutions that treat symptoms rather than address root causes is destined to falter at some point. We are seeing this fatal flaw in the current health care crisis. More drugs are prescribed each year and yet degenerative disease continues to grow and our bulging hospitals are struggling to cope with the flood. The pharmaceutical “solution” is anything but. Last year, prescription drugs became our fourth largest killers. There is a similar bankruptcy in the management of plant and animal health. (more…)