Saturday, March 7, 2009

The soil

Nature abhores a vacuum. Big deal, one might say. Yet, it is a big deal. Whether the space between planets, within the ocean or in the soil, space is never wasted.

Teaming with life, soil is the basis for most agriculture. Within it, millions of living organisms help to enliven the soil and prepare nutrients for plant assimilation. Shortly in not much more than two weeks, the soil here at the farm will be preparedd for planting. But, to get the highest quality out of the plant, the soil must be brought up to snuff; i.e., the soil has to be fed.

What does the soil eat? Soil needs food, vegetable and animal composts, to eat. But, the soil cannot eat correctly unless it is somewhat balanced and can carry on certain metabolic functions. Not only does it need food, it requires calcium, among other things. Calcium not only helps to keep a good ph range, buffering acidic soils, it also increases the availability of carbon dioxide. Proper nutrients in the soil help the soil to fully utilize its food, the compost. From the reverse side, compoost starts up the soil eating, metabolic process so that, in part, it can make available to the plant the nutrients and minerals in the soil. As soil eating bacteria digest the compost in the soil, one of the outcomes of such activity is the production of carbolic acid. Carbolic acid works on rock, breaking the rock down slowly and making the minerals in the rock accessable for uptake by plants. What I am learning here at the farm is, although we have a soil filled with thosands of tons of calcium per acre, little of it is available for use. Why? I think it is because very little metabolic activity is occuring in the soil. After many years of placidity on behalf of the soil, it is now having to wake up. The whole process of digesting compost, of stimulating the microbes and getting the system up and running, takes some time. Slowly but surely it is getting done here. Our vegetable beds are already showing much improvement. This season, I fully expect magnitudes of improvement in the soil chemistry.

Most bites of food coming from the soil here also have the bonus of being effected by the quartzite abundant in the soil. Whether one believes in the more escoteric side of things or not, quartz is a crystal very capable of tuning and amplifying electro-magetic energy (see what radios used to tune in stations). Though certainly I am not espoucing any specfic claims regarding the quartz crystals in the soil, rest assured, there is certainly cause and effect.

Another component of the soil here which one will undoubtedly be taking in, via the veggies, is ancient sea life. Even at the farm's relative high elevation, millenia ago it was covered by a shallow sea which deposited many types of sea life within layers of shale. Their shells remain and get incorporated back into the soil as the acids in the soil break them down. The cycle of life keeps on keeping on.

Not only does nature dislike a vacuum; it turns out so does the head of our country's economic policy, Federal Reserve Governor Bernake, et al. They abhore it so much, they gave away billions to prevent such a vacuum. By vacuum I mean a lack of junk flooding our homes in the form of useless, stupifyingly unneeded stuff. Yet, what is utterly, unbelievably, how did it happen, crazy, is, the federal reserve is nothing more than a private corporation bent on doing to the best of its ability what all corporations by charter are supposed to do; accumulate capital. Can a federal reserve person do what is best for his/her country while at the same time maximizing profits for the company he/she works for? You can answer that one. What one can perhaps say with certainty; unless elected officials of high moral character act out of an enlightened interest to help others, this country will struggle. Though we are still the brightest light in the sea, our bulb has dimmed. We should expect much more from our country, and from ourselves.
Peace out



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, I never knew soil was so complex.

March 8, 2009 2:24 PM  

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