Here’s the dirt…

I’m hoping by the time you read this we’ve had a little relief from all this rain. Typically, around this time of year we’re needing a little respite from sun and dry weather but not this year! My Dad told me some of his broccoli heads are actually rotting on the stalks. I see mushrooms everywhere, so I bet mycologists are loving all this sogginess. Anyway, it struck me that our soil must be very happy right now. Goodness knows the weeds are. But, is the soil really happy? Is there a chance that precious nutrients are washing away? Are earthworms and other beneficial underground bugs drowning? I don’t have any answers for those questions, but it did get me to thinking once again about my soil here in Dublin that you always hear me moaning and groaning about.

Interestingly, a reader also had noticed all my complaints about Dublin soil and he wrote me a thoughtful note. He’s a certified soilsmith and invited me, and now all ELF readers to a class he’s going to be giving in Gilsum. You can also look him up on Facebook. He has started a group called New England Biological Farming. He asked me to share the info about his class, so I asked him to write a few paragraphs about what to expect. Here it is:

Introduction to Natural Farming and Gardening

The act of farming and gardening once created abundance not only of food but also of natural environments for wildlife and all levels of biology. Today the act of farming and gardening has the potential to turn into an industrial activity that creates an abundance of chemical inputs and pesticides running off into our water supply and leaving much of the land and waterways barren. But we have the opportunity to change all of this just by aligning with nature and understanding the power of microbes. If you are looking for a way to make a real impact on the environmental and social issues affecting your neighborhood, learn how to turn your garden, homestead or farm into a living example of diversity and community. The methods of natural farming are healthy for the land, inexpensive and best of all they are contagious.

In this Introduction to Natural Farming and Gardening class you will be exposed to methods of farming that harness the power of microbes to provide nutrition to your plants through soil fertility. By viewing three different methods of natural farming, it will become clear that aligning with the way mother nature was designed to work is actually the path of least resistance leading to abundance. In this class the basic concepts behind building your own fertilizers and pest solutions will be discussed and easily accessible resources will be revealed to get you started on developing your own solutions to your pest and plant nutrition problems.

Join us at Restoring Eden Holistic Health and Wellness in Gilsum, NH on July 31st from 11am-1pm to meet up with a community of farmers and gardeners learning to align with nature for better yields, better flavors and a better planet.

Chris Longest is a certified Soilsmith and an agricultural consultant that focuses on soil fertility and livestock health through the use of microorganisms. You can find tickets to the event by following this link: