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The muck is the brass...

 
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peaceful_life



Joined: 21 Sep 2010
Posts: 544

PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2015 4:10 pm    Post subject: The muck is the brass... Reply with quote

Soil microbiologist, Dr Elaine Ingham, gives a very interesting talk on the state of our soils and what we have to do about it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x2H60ritjag

Worth making some notes as you go.
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emordnilap



Joined: 05 Sep 2007
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Location: Houǝsʇlʎ' ᴉʇ,s ɹǝɐllʎ uoʇ ʍoɹʇɥ ʇɥǝ ǝɟɟoɹʇ' pou,ʇ ǝʌǝu qoʇɥǝɹ˙

PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2015 5:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks p_l. Looks interesting and useful; I'll watch it later.

I like the way she's confirming lots that is common sense: not 'exporting' nutrients; no-dig; local compost.
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"Buddhists say we come back as animals and they refer to them as lesser beings. Well, animals aren’t lesser beings, they’re just like us. So I say fụck the Buddhists" - Bjork
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peaceful_life



Joined: 21 Sep 2010
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2015 5:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

emordnilap wrote:
Thanks p_l. Looks interesting and useful; I'll watch it later.

I like the way she's confirming lots that is common sense: not 'exporting' nutrients; no-dig; local compost.


Excellent.

Yes, huge helpings of common sense, but there's also a few things I doubt you'll be expecting.

If I may, I'll also suggest the book 'Teaming with microbes', it's well worth owning a copy.

ps.... get the the 'revised edition' and there's also now 'teaming with nutrients '


Last edited by peaceful_life on Tue Mar 24, 2015 7:39 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Mr. Fox



Joined: 24 Nov 2005
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2015 6:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excellent. Thanks p_l. Smile

I found the slides that go with this lecture: http://orfc.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Oxford-Keynote-2014.pptx
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peaceful_life



Joined: 21 Sep 2010
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2015 7:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mr. Fox wrote:
Excellent. Thanks p_l. Smile

I found the slides that go with this lecture: http://orfc.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Oxford-Keynote-2014.pptx



Ahh, good stuff, I had completely forgotten about the slides till you helpfully posted them!.
You helped me remember this write up too....
http://sustainablefoodtrust.org/articles/roots-health-elaine-ingham-science-soil/

Thank you for that.
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emordnilap



Joined: 05 Sep 2007
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2015 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another good article here: Home Growing Produces Ten Times the Food of Arable Farms

Quote:
during the World War II, allotments and gardens provided around 10% of food consumed in the UK because of the Dig for Victory campaign whilst comprising <1% of the area of arable cultivation.

Take a moment absorbing the significance of that statement. Home growing produced ten times the food per acre than arable farms!

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peaceful_life



Joined: 21 Sep 2010
Posts: 544

PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

emordnilap wrote:
Another good article here: Home Growing Produces Ten Times the Food of Arable Farms

Quote:
during the World War II, allotments and gardens provided around 10% of food consumed in the UK because of the Dig for Victory campaign whilst comprising <1% of the area of arable cultivation.

Take a moment absorbing the significance of that statement. Home growing produced ten times the food per acre than arable farms!


If* we apply some 'true cost accounting', it rapidly becomes evident that, not only can the eco-systemic practices hit parity with conventional methods, in productive, and therefore financial, terms, it also then reveals that... without the exercise of simply pretending the internal financial costs of synthetic inputs , along with the incalculable biospherical degradation derived from them, into some kind of unaccountable externalised 'away-a-sphere'....the entire conventional process isn't even sane, in ecological health terms, let alone viable in abstract financial terms, moreover...according to the physics, it was only ever a temporary blip anyway.

So it stands to reason that ecological practices produce higher yield per XYZ area of whatever, quantifying these practices in a monetised reductionist fashion, well....that's quite another strawman within the premise of yield, one that's legs are rapidly turning to compost ;-0)


I think some key points needing collectively understood across the board were captured in the, Sustainable Food Trust, write up.

'Forget the latest farm app: the most essential piece of equipment a farmer or grower can have is a microscope. And the one skill she or he needs above all else is how to make aerobic compost and compost teas. It is these that contain the necessary microorganisms for soil health. Applied correctly, this is the only magic bullet youll ever need. Its as simple as that.


'Assays of plant tissues reveal that the nutrients present bear no relationship whatsoever to any soluble artificial nutrients applied. A plant requires all nutrients to a greater or lesser extent, and only it knows what it needs and when the trick is having all those nutrients in a bio-available form in the soil at all times.

She also blows away the myth of pH, the measure of soil acidity or alkalinity. Since when, she asks, has nature said a pH 6.5 is ideal for crops, when they grow successfully in ranges from 5.511? Soil pH varies so widely even along a root hair that an average value is meaningless. It isnt the soil pH that needs analysing, its the soils microbial life'



'Even more controversially[?], Ingham points out that all soils on the planet have enough (inorganic) nutrients locked up in their mineral particles (that is, particles derived from rocks) to feed plants for the next 10,000 billion years. What?!

The only reason the Green Revolution worked is that it fed dirt, not soil. Sustainable intensification? Forget it. It wont work because it cant: it still relies on the chemical inputs that destroy soil life. Get your soil biology right, and you dont need to spread manure, rotate crops or till soil. (At this point, even the organic farmers at the Oxford conference winced.)'


Some quite profound stuff there.
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fuzzy



Joined: 29 Nov 2013
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Location: The Marches, UK

PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2015 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Farms in Britain do not represent an efficient way of land use, they are the outcome of the Saxons, Normans, inheritance and trust law, and having the soldiers, lawyers, judges and police to enforce those 'rights'.
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emordnilap



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 12:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very interesting video, p_l. She's scathing about crop rotation but her arguments do make sense: get the biology right and you're cooking.

No-one asked her about slugs. Laughing
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"Buddhists say we come back as animals and they refer to them as lesser beings. Well, animals aren’t lesser beings, they’re just like us. So I say fụck the Buddhists" - Bjork
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peaceful_life



Joined: 21 Sep 2010
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

emordnilap wrote:
Very interesting video, p_l. She's scathing about crop rotation but her arguments do make sense: get the biology right and you're cooking.

No-one asked her about slugs. Laughing


Aye, she's basically dismantling the tweaking of convention, which is essentially all rotation is, a faux faade in remaining the same whilst simultaneously trying to appear to be a alternative solution, a bit like austerity really ;-0)
Even Patrick Holden has now since admitted that the 'organic' label and movement got it wrong.

It's not possible to 'organically' plough the land, as Elaine points out, that's just a process of slicing and dicing the microbial life, which actually IS soil. If agriculture is reasoned to be predicated on the foundation of encouraging 'life' as it's default position, then we'd better re-cognise the destructive starting point of ploughing to actually be the antithesis of life....and that's a very big truth to deal with.

Her communication style can seem argument based, however...she's proved the her hypothesis to be demonstrable fact, so she's actually just departing information, she's just a wee bit angry about the whole situation and after decades of proofing beneficial work to closed minds..who can blame her?.....although, there are rumblings of vindicating change now beginning tip the balance.

I think she'd of ducked the slug question with a leap-frog of recharged hydrology and mibee a pond...or two. ;-0)
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Mr. Fox



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Honestly, p_l, that's the worst bunch of puns I've heard Toaday. Razz
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peaceful_life



Joined: 21 Sep 2010
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 3:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mr. Fox wrote:
Honestly, p_l, that's the worst bunch of puns I've heard Toaday. Razz


Anno...ama bit slow-worm-ing around the innuendo craic!
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