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 soil life will come in droves. This diverse group of hard working organisms are the key to keeping our soils strong and well – they convert minerals, filter water, capture carbon and break down toxins.

Living soils make for less disease because beneficial fungi and bacteria out-compete ‘bad’ fungi and bacteria. Soils jamming with life are more resilient in drought, flood, heat and cold and create healthier plants with robust cells for better yields/ less hassles.

Speed the process along with regular applications of one of my favourite products – EM (effective microorganisms).

Air

forksta

This awesome tool is called a forksta and will become your best friend in the garden. You can use an ordinary fork for sure.

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, dandelion, chicory, parsley) and by aerating with a long tined fork.

Aerating means opening your soil up. Slide a fork in, pull it back towards you and slide it back out. Don’t turn the soil over. Turned soil creates havoc in all the carefully organised layers of soil. Soil is stronger when it’s left to it’s own devices.

If your soil is wet or soggy, leave it be until it dries out.

Mulch

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.

Comments

  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?