You will have no difficulties in establishing a ley from old pasture where a kale crop and an oat and vetch crop have intervened. The decaying turf has released, by means of the organic acids of decay bringing them into solution, the unavailable minerals which are present in every soil if only they can be […]
Learn how to create and maintain fertile soil, including balancing minerals and nutrients, when and how to use fertilizers, and about composting. Become familiar with soil life, including earthworms, dung beetles and soil microbes.
Over twenty years ago Sir Albert Howard insisted on the importance of the biological, as distinct from the chemical, assessment of soil fertility. He declared that chemical soil analysis was, at very best, nothing more than a rough guide, to be checked against physical examination and a close observation of biological and botanical indications.
Natural products such as these generally do not have high N-P-K numbers, but offer a wealth of readily available nutrients to plants in a living soil.
Manures are an excellent source of nitrogen.
When limestone is put on the soil, it accepts acidity from the clay, just as other minerals do in the rock weathering processes.
As those billions of microbes in a handful of soil go through their life cycles living and dying, they are providing a constant source of nutrients. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi are capable of passing both organic and inorganic forms of phosphate to plants. One of the huge differences between our cropland soils and natural ecosystems is […]