Digging in the cover crops and harvesting the ginger gives me a chance to see how healthy the earthworm population is. How valuable this little creature is as it eats, digests then excretes the conditioned and minerally enriched soil we call castings. I can understand why Aristotle called them the intestines of the soil. It is thought the average earthworm produces its own body weight in castings every 24 hours as it burrows its way through the soil, aerating it as it goes. Charles Darwin calculated that up to 15 tons of dry earth can pass through earthworms annually in each acre of earth. And what better fertilizer can we ask for. Aerating, draining, mixing with their decomposing bodies contributing nitrogen. Organic farming principles ensure the health of these valuable creatures of the earth and now as glyphosate (round-up ) and other herbicides are losing their effectiveness as plants evolve faster than the chemicals we throw at them, older and safer farming methods will begin returning.
From the Weeds News today.
[TWN 30 July 2015] The NSW Department of Primary Industries has transformed itself into an agri-chemical lobby group and is now promoting cancer causing herbicides via full-page advertising in its publicly funded publications. The Department’s new publication Weed Control in Winter Crops 2015 carries several full-page promotions for herbicides and pesticides, including a full-page advertisement for glyphosate, the chemical recently declared a “probable carcinogen” by the World Health Organization expert group, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). “In South Australia, government bodies are not permitted to carry advertisements for private-sector companies, as this could be interpreted as a form of government endorsement of a private-sector company,” commented Dr David Low, senior adjunct research fellow at Monash University and general manager of The Weed’s Network. “The amount of assistance being given to private agri-chemical companies in Australia is becoming unbalanced.
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