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George with belated name dropping.
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peaceful_life



Joined: 21 Sep 2010
Posts: 544

PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2015 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are no benefits to soil tillage.
I's just bad habitual practice.
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Little John



Joined: 08 Mar 2008
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Location: UK

PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2015 4:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Every time soil is tilled, webs of life are destroyed
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peaceful_life



Joined: 21 Sep 2010
Posts: 544

PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2015 5:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Little John wrote:
Every time soil is tilled, webs of life are destroyed


Along with shit loads of carbon release, erosion, run-off, siltation (including spawning grounds), heat retention, frost expansion, drought, flooding etc etc etc....

That's without the spraying.
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vtsnowedin



Joined: 07 Jan 2011
Posts: 6476
Location: New England ,Chelsea Vermont

PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2015 10:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

peaceful_life wrote:
Little John wrote:
Every time soil is tilled, webs of life are destroyed


Along with shit loads of carbon release, erosion, run-off, siltation (including spawning grounds), heat retention, frost expansion, drought, flooding etc etc etc....

That's without the spraying.

Now now guys don't get carried away. Life systems aren't destroyed. They are altered and go in different directions. When I plow down the oats and clover I have growing in this years food plot I will increase the carbon content of the soil not decrease it. There is no spraying involved here and the nearest running water is over 300 yards away with grass ,brush and trees fully established between . NO eroding soil will get more then ten yards from the plot edge and will get put back.

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Little John



Joined: 08 Mar 2008
Posts: 8337
Location: UK

PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2015 10:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The oil we eat.

http://www.resilience.org/stories/2004-05-23/oil-we-eat-following-food-chain-back-iraq

Quote:
.....Agriculture is a recent human experiment. For most of human history, we lived by gathering or killing a broad variety of nature's offerings. Why humans might have traded this approach for the complexities of agriculture is an interesting and long-debated question, especially because the skeletal evidence clearly indicates that early farmers were more poorly nourished, more disease-ridden and deformed, than their hunter-gatherer contemporaries. Farming did not improve most lives. The evidence that best points to the answer, I think, lies in the difference between early agricultural villages and their pre-agricultural counterparts--the presence not just of grain but of granaries and, more tellingly, of just a few houses significantly larger and more ornate than all the others attached to those granaries. Agriculture was not so much about food as it was about the accumulation of wealth. It benefited some humans, and those people have been in charge ever since.....

....When we say the soil is rich, it is not a metaphor. It is as rich in energy as an oil well. A prairie converts that energy to flowers and roots and stems, which in turn pass back into the ground as dead organic matter. The layers of topsoil build up into a rich repository of energy, a bank. A farm field appropriates that energy, puts it into seeds we can eat. Much of the energy moves from the earth to the rings of fat around our necks and waists. And much of the energy is simply wasted, a trail of dollars billowing from the burglar's satchel.....

....Our ancestors found it preferable to pluck the energy from the ground and when it ran out move on.

....Today we do the same, only now when the vault is empty we fill it again with new energy in the form of oil-rich fertilizers. Oil is annual primary productivity stored as hydrocarbons, a trust fund of sorts, built up over many thousands of years. On average, it takes 5.5 gallons of fossil energy to restore a year's worth of lost fertility to an acre of eroded land--in 1997 we burned through more than 400 years' worth of ancient fossilized productivity, most of it from someplace else. Even as the earth beneath Iowa shrinks, it is being globalized.....


Were treating soil like dirt. Its a fatal mistake, as our lives depend on it

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/mar/25/treating-soil-like-dirt-fatal-mistake-human-life
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vtsnowedin



Joined: 07 Jan 2011
Posts: 6476
Location: New England ,Chelsea Vermont

PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2015 11:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Little John wrote:
The oil we eat.

......

Were treating soil like dirt. Its a fatal mistake, as our lives depend on it

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/mar/25/treating-soil-like-dirt-fatal-mistake-human-life

So Little John? where do you get your food from? Permaculture beds you tend yourself?
I just dropped $250 on a cart full of groceries at the local super market so I won't BS you that I'm fossil fuel food independent today but I have in the past grown and raised enough food on my land to live on if need be. 50 chickens here a ton of potatoes there and a milk cow and calf in the barn have all had there turn and if needed can be done again. Having done it gives one a different perspective then one who reads about it.
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Little John



Joined: 08 Mar 2008
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Location: UK

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 12:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vtsnowedin wrote:
Little John wrote:
The oil we eat.

......

Were treating soil like dirt. Its a fatal mistake, as our lives depend on it

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/mar/25/treating-soil-like-dirt-fatal-mistake-human-life

So Little John? where do you get your food from? Permaculture beds you tend yourself?
I just dropped $250 on a cart full of groceries at the local super market so I won't BS you that I'm fossil fuel food independent today but I have in the past grown and raised enough food on my land to live on if need be. 50 chickens here a ton of potatoes there and a milk cow and calf in the barn have all had there turn and if needed can be done again. Having done it gives one a different perspective then one who reads about it.
I grew up on a Farm V and, later on, in a farming community. Half of my extended family are still small scale hill farmers. Notwithstanding any of that and also not withstanding that you are in a fortunate position to grow your own food, these personal histories of ours are neither here nor there. Furthermore, I am more than willing to state that I am fully dependant on the system of agriculture that I also consider to be utterly unsustainable. The one fact does not negate the other and to suggest it does is, frankly, silly. It's akin to arguing no-one has the right to criticise the banking system because they use money created by banks in their everyday transactions.
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peaceful_life



Joined: 21 Sep 2010
Posts: 544

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 12:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vtsnowedin wrote:
peaceful_life wrote:
Little John wrote:
Every time soil is tilled, webs of life are destroyed


Along with shit loads of carbon release, erosion, run-off, siltation (including spawning grounds), heat retention, frost expansion, drought, flooding etc etc etc....

That's without the spraying.

Now now guys don't get carried away. Life systems aren't destroyed. They are altered and go in different directions. When I plow down the oats and clover I have growing in this years food plot I will increase the carbon content of the soil not decrease it. There is no spraying involved here and the nearest running water is over 300 yards away with grass ,brush and trees fully established between . NO eroding soil will get more then ten yards from the plot edge and will get put back.




[/quote]Now now guys don't get carried away. Life systems aren't destroyed. They are altered and go in different directions. When I plow down the oats and clover I have growing in this years food plot I will increase the carbon content of the soil not decrease it. There is no spraying involved here and the nearest running water is over 300 yards away with grass ,brush and trees fully established between . NO eroding soil will get more then ten yards from the plot edge and will get put back[/quote]


No, what you're doing is either accepting received wisdom, without question, or.. wittignly ploughing on regardless, simply for the sake of the dollar.

When you plough, you're doing it because the plant you're growing is a commodified annual, unless you eat a lot of oats(?), either way...it's still a uniformed monoculture, I'll repeat that, a UNIFORMED MONOCULTURE and if nature abhors anything, it's the vacuum of a monoculture, hence why they do not naturally occur, in fact, if you think about it, they are the very antithesis of the evolutionary process, so...you're already on the road in attempting to defy the universal laws and make no mistake that when you plough, you are releasing carbon and you're ripping up ripping up root structures, albeit your shallow uniformed ones, which help in hydrological retention, along with the myriad (1% currently known to science) community of life-forms and the gasses from them, good earth is 50% soil 50% space /water capacity and a web of plasmic streaming, which you've just obliterated with the plough...and compacted with the tractor, giving you a double carbon release.

You'll also find (don't try and bullshit) that weeds will follow the compaction trails to redress them back to the optimum, therefore...I don't believe you don't spray, to maintain uniformity and if you do...it goes right the way in to the hydrological system, which doesn't recognise 300 yards, equate that: 1mm of rainfall/water over 1 square meter=1 litre, that's a lot of kinetic volume to shift debris and toxins.
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vtsnowedin



Joined: 07 Jan 2011
Posts: 6476
Location: New England ,Chelsea Vermont

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 3:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

peaceful_life wrote:



No, what you're doing is either accepting received wisdom, without question, or.. wittignly ploughing on regardless, simply for the sake of the dollar.

When you plough, you're doing it because the plant you're growing is a commodified annual, unless you eat a lot of oats(?), either way...it's still a uniformed monoculture, I'll repeat that, a UNIFORMED MONOCULTURE and if nature abhors anything, it's the vacuum of a monoculture, hence why they do not naturally occur, in fact, if you think about it, they are the very antithesis of the evolutionary process, so...you're already on the road in attempting to defy the universal laws and make no mistake that when you plough, you are releasing carbon and you're ripping up ripping up root structures, albeit your shallow uniformed ones, which help in hydrological retention, along with the myriad (1% currently known to science) community of life-forms and the gasses from them, good earth is 50% soil 50% space /water capacity and a web of plasmic streaming, which you've just obliterated with the plough...and compacted with the tractor, giving you a double carbon release.

You'll also find (don't try and bullshit) that weeds will follow the compaction trails to redress them back to the optimum, therefore...I don't believe you don't spray, to maintain uniformity and if you do...it goes right the way in to the hydrological system, which doesn't recognise 300 yards, equate that: 1mm of rainfall/water over 1 square meter=1 litre, that's a lot of kinetic volume to shift debris and toxins.

You're full of it.
For one thing it is not a monoculture. Despite the fact that what you can see in the pictures is just the oats it was also seeded with clovers , turnips and rape among other things which are all doing well between the oat stems.
Second I don't own a sprayer, not even a one gallon hand pump one so just cross that off your list.
Third the land is too rough to harvest commercially so there is no dollar incentive here. I'm working to improve the soil not degrade it.
Third the plowing loosens up the soil counteracting decades of hoof compaction by livestock. What compaction the tractor reapplies while harrowing and seeding is negligible.
Forth there are plenty of weeds in it as I did not spray it. Part of that diversity you talk about and they are doing quite well. No matte!! I'm going to plow them under along with the green manure crop so they can add their carbon back to the soil.
What bothers me about you is all the things you know for sure that just ain't so. Rolling Eyes
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biffvernon



Joined: 24 Nov 2005
Posts: 18539
Location: Lincolnshire

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 8:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looks to me like you're doing a great job in a great place, vt.
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Little John



Joined: 08 Mar 2008
Posts: 8337
Location: UK

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think VT is doing anything other than most people could do in such circumstances. He is as tied to the current systemic way of doing things as anybody else. Perhaps a bit less than those of us trapped in an urban existence. But, tied nonetheless. The thing to note here is that no-one was directly criticising V initially. He chose to intervene in a couple of posts by PL and myself in order to defend and promote form of farming that, although mitigated to a limited extent in his own circumstances, is unsustainable nonetheless. Consequently, he has only received the specific criticism of his own farming practices from PL because of that intervention
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emordnilap



Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 14615
Location: Houǝsʇlʎ' ᴉʇ,s ɹǝɐllʎ uoʇ ʍoɹʇɥ ʇɥǝ ǝɟɟoɹʇ' pou,ʇ ǝʌǝu qoʇɥǝɹ˙

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 10:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sometimes, I would love to deprive certain people of fossil fuels for a few years.
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I experience pleasure and pains, and pursue goals in service of them, so I cannot reasonably deny the right of other sentient agents to do the same - Steven Pinker
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vtsnowedin



Joined: 07 Jan 2011
Posts: 6476
Location: New England ,Chelsea Vermont

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

emordnilap wrote:
Sometimes, I would love to deprive certain people of fossil fuels for a few years.

Some would tolerate that better then others. Cool

The till or no till debate goes on of course. Some seem to think you could stop all tillage without the use of chemicals and still have enough food to go around. That is just not going to happen. Then others in mortal fear of any chemical use go to "Organic" farming only to find that tillage and mid season cultivation is required and that each pass causes erosion. Add in some insect and fungus attacks and profitability goes out the window.
Farmers do indeed have tough choices to make.
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emordnilap



Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 14615
Location: Houǝsʇlʎ' ᴉʇ,s ɹǝɐllʎ uoʇ ʍoɹʇɥ ʇɥǝ ǝɟɟoɹʇ' pou,ʇ ǝʌǝu qoʇɥǝɹ˙

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 11:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vtsnowedin wrote:
emordnilap wrote:
Sometimes, I would love to deprive certain people of fossil fuels for a few years.

Some would tolerate that better then others. Cool


True but that wasn't my point.
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I experience pleasure and pains, and pursue goals in service of them, so I cannot reasonably deny the right of other sentient agents to do the same - Steven Pinker
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Little John



Joined: 08 Mar 2008
Posts: 8337
Location: UK

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 12:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vtsnowedin wrote:
emordnilap wrote:
Sometimes, I would love to deprive certain people of fossil fuels for a few years.

Some would tolerate that better then others. Cool

The till or no till debate goes on of course. Some seem to think you could stop all tillage without the use of chemicals and still have enough food to go around. That is just not going to happen. Then others in mortal fear of any chemical use go to "Organic" farming only to find that tillage and mid season cultivation is required and that each pass causes erosion. Add in some insect and fungus attacks and profitability goes out the window.
Farmers do indeed have tough choices to make.
I am certainly not suggesting that no tillage would provide a sufficient food supply for 7 billion people. I firmly believe it would not. Even more so if hydrocarbons are also removed form the equation. My point is that hydrocarbon fuelled tillage is also equally unsustainable. but, for the moment, it allows the party to continue. However, when the party stops, the hangover will be enormous with an outcome worse than any other.

There is no happy ending. Only sad and sadder ones.
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