Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Real Dirt on No Till Soil

I just read an interesting essay on the benefits of no tillage agriculture: Uncovering The Real Dirt On No-Till, by Drs. Jill Clapperton and Megan Ryan.

When we are standing on the ground, we are really standing on the roof top of another world. Living in the soil are plant roots, viruses, bacteria, fungi, algae, protozoa, mites, nematodes, worms, ants, maggots and other insects and insect larvae (grubs), and larger animals. Indeed, the volume of living organisms below ground is often far greater than that above ground. Together with climate, these organisms are responsible for the decay of organic matter and cycling of both macro- and micro-nutrients back into forms that plants can use.

I am getting increasingly interested in learning more about soil biology. There is some interesting looking stuff in the references....

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