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Soil and Crops
My questions is whether the secret sauce is decompaction (in the case of zone tillage and no till) and the organic nutrition contained in mulch (in the case of no till) or the the fact that in both cases the microbiology of the soil is improving by better air and water availability to sustain appropriate microbial life -- bacteria, fungi, other microbes, nematodes, etc. (which have also prospered through the mulching process).
If the key component in "restoring" or "improving" the soil is the microbial activity -- which presumably has its own ability to reduce compaction -- then shouldn't the goal of many research institutions be the creation of microbial rich soil amendments?
Woud appreciate any comment as I try to come up the learning curve of sustainability.
No till or strip till is not a solution. It is a tool. I can show you full tillage operations that have healthier and more productive soil with fewer purchased inputs than no till operations and I can show you no till operations with fewer purchased inputs that have healthier soil and are more productive than full tillage operations.
What really works the best, and this is the best kept secret; is that if you understand soil and plants - especially roots - you can choose the tools and use the tools that you need for the very best and most profitable result.
We dont need to purchase more amendments. Everything we have is already there exept perhaps the knowledge.
no-till soil...true no-till like in years, not season(s).
When listening to adds for biological products, I'm reminded of their comments that NOT all soil is created equal...different areas/fields/counties/states have different make up of soil micro critters. Also reminded of seed companies that want to treat all seed for all problems with their additives..and like an internal combustion engine set up as a diesel, put gasoline in the fuel and expect problems, or take out one valve and expect poor performance. I'm NOT saying all additives are batwings and swamp water, but if there isn't any test data of that product from your immediate area, maybe the company needs to be paying you for testing the product.