3 Ways To Banging Soil

Team soil. Here it is.

Soil Life

perfect beetroot sowing soil - friable and lush

Create the right environment (plant roots, air, organic matter, moisture) and they will come in droves, this diverse group of hard working organisms that keep our soils well, convert minerals, filter water, capture carbon and break down toxins.

Thriving soils make for less disease (out-compete ‘bad’ fungus and bacteria), more resilience (strong cells, big root systems) and healthier plants for better yields/ less hassles. Speed the process along with one of my favourite products – EM (effective microorganisms).



Air is where it’s at. Air is necessary for soil life and big, resilient nutrient gathering plant roots. Get air into your soil with deep rooting plants throughout (think fruit trees, fennel, chicory, parsley) and by aerating. Aerating is opening your soil up. Slide a fork in, pull it back towards you and slide it back out. Don’t turn the soil over. Havoc ensues, as all the carefully organised layers of soil need to re organise themselves. You need a broadfork, or his clever little cousin – the forksta. You can use an ordinary fork for sure.


yarrow fennel and parsley mulchMulching is also composting, also watering, also building soil life. I’m making it third on my list in preference to compost – wow! Recycling via mulching is nature’s finest work. Her team of brilliant composters may be tiny things – worms, fungi, microbes – but they really get things done, creating magic by transforming organic matter into nutritious soil. I’m not advocating for not composting (sacre bleu – no way), I’m just playing a priority game here – and today mulch is the winner.

Right about now I’m mulching with a heady mix of lemon balm, borage, fennel, parsley, yarrow and rotten sawdust. The reason behind this particular brew is because this is what I’ve got. In a few months time, the brew will have changed – mulch like the harvest – rolls with the seasons.


  1. Thanks Kath. Awesome info as usual! The EM sounds interesting – for us home gardeners, would you recommend the 1L EM Garden or the 1L Garden Boost which also has the Fish Hydrolysate in it too?

  2. Great read, thanks! I am tossing up between a broadfork and a forksta at the moment, and am leaning towards a forksta for home garden use,but was wondering your thoughts?