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Friday, September 5, 2008

Micro-Eco Farming

I just finished reading this book. While somewhat lightweight, it is also interesting and inspiring. It explores the emergence of "micro-farms" - farmers that are operating on tiny acreages and achieving high yields using organic and sustainable practices.

It is inspiring me to think about what and how I could, and perhaps should be growing things.
What: Heirloom fruits and vegetables that might have fallen out of favor due to their inability to be shipped or held for long distances and times, but which could be perfect for local consumption.
How: Restoring the health and balance of the soil, thereby increasing the health and nutrition of what we eat. Specifically, I'd like to try adding organic amendments to the soil. I found and purchased greensand, but would also like to source rock dusts and kelp. They contain micro-nutrients that can be lost due to poor farming methods and which chemical fertilizers can't replace. I plan to add the chicken litter this fall as well as allow the pigs a week or two in the spent garden to play cleanup. They can eat the vegetable remnants while spreading their own manure. After they are done, I'll broadcast turnips which the sheep can eat in November and December - while also spreading their own manure.

It will be a challenge to see just how much of a difference can be made in the health and productivity of the garden.

I'm pretty excited. But then it doesn't take much.

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