Organic Soil

Since we are very interested in growing our own food, I thought I would write about what I’ve found. And the first thing for me to learn about is: what is the definition of organic soil?

So I went on the internet, a lovely thing to have access to, and found the following definition from aboutorganics.co.uk:

Organic soil

A healthy soil, rich in nutrients and life, is the essential building block of any garden. Soil is a complex and delicate ecosystem in its own right with a multitude of organisms converting a wide variety of inactive materials into the essential nutrients that your plants will thrive on. Chemical fertilisers can destroy these organisms and pull you and your garden into a cycle of dependency.

A fundamental principle of organic gardening is to feed your soil and then let the soil feed your plants. By providing the materials that the natural fauna and flora in your soil need to thrive, you will encourage more and more of these hard working little organisms to grow and multiply. The result: an ever increasing quality of soil with more and more available nutrients.

As your soil develops the effects spread further up the larger ecosystem. Good soil promotes healthy populations of worms and worms attract larger garden visitors. It’s not long before even the smallest garden starts to see signs of hedgehogs, toads and other more substantial beasties. Their presence further adds to the quality of your soil. You’d be amazed just how much nutrient comes out of the feathery posteriors of the typical family of birds.

So — organic soil is a living, evolving type of soil that supplies nutrients to the plants one is growing, which in turn supplies nutrients to the human body.

Add chemicals, such as chemical fertilizers, and you start to poison the soil, then the plants, and finally the human body.

If one is growing food in ever increasing nutrient rich soil, why use chemicals?

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4 Comments for "What is organic soil?"

  1. Diane Vigil

    I’d forgotten to comment about this, George. At any rate, it all stands to reason, since “dead” soil doesn’t do so well for farming purposes.

  2. George Vigil

    I’ve grown plenty of natural gardens, no pesticides used, but I don’t think it was organic. It will be fun to find out by empirical observation how it goes and then how it goes with us consuming such food from our own garden.

  3. Lynn Cameron

    Hi George,

    In 2010 I was prompted by a young farmer/blacksmith friend to revisit the work of the late organic soil scientist, Dr. Carey Reams,in an attempt to increase the nutrient content of my organic garden produce. After 30 years’ on and off work at soil improvement and vegetable mediocrity, I want better results for my labors.

    So, I gathered a cup and a half of soil from my 6 raised beds in production and mailed it off to International Ag Labs in Fairmont, MN. I’m waiting for my shipment of ‘soil amendments’ to arrive just in time for Fall application – the best time to add them. I’m told the improvement will be gradual over the next couple seasons. I’ll be able to monitor both the leaf and fruit ‘nutrient-density’ with the use of a refractometer to measure sugar (thus mineral) content and adjust amendments accordingly for expected ever-increasing flavor, storage ability and pest-resistance.

    For more info on growing high quality organic food see highbrixgardens.com and the material compiled by Jon C. Frank who maintains that higher mineral density means more energy available to the body and that “sickness and disease are the result of a nutritional deficiency – not a drug deficency”.

    Check out what they offer to assist organic gardeners.
    Lynn

  4. Diane Vigil

    Speaking of organic soil, we’ve just posted Lynn’s article
    Improving Food Quality through Brix Testing (it has everything to do with soil).

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