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Plant health? It starts in the dirt! The health of your plants begins with the health of your soil. It is an amazing and complicated ecosystem of it’s very own.
Leaves fall in the forest and (whether they make a sound or not) they are quickly consumed by the same system that pushed them out. They fall and their nutrients are separated back into their most basic elements and then they are whisked around by fungi, worms and billions of different microbes.
They are blended and combined by this unrelenting, (and wage free) labor force until they are ready to be sucked up by the plants and pushed out as stems, leaves and flowers once again
Healthy soil is a working system that you can tap into. Healthy soil grows healthy plants that produce healthy flowers and fruit. It’s not that hard or expensive- it’s about organic matter- and I mean leaves and clippings and vegetable scraps from your kitchen.
Your free labor force will do all that chemistry, aeration and nourishing of your plants and all they want is your yard waste and kitchen scraps? Now that’s a great deal! Combine them with sunshine and clean water and you get yard waste turned into medicine and food- the ultimate recycling program!
Plant matter feeds the system that feeds your plants so your garden can be increasingly independent of chemicals and closer to being ‘whole.’ Keep your little labor force fed and you’ll see your happy, well adjusted plants will produce wholesome food and medicine and will be far more resistant to stress and harmful bugs.
What about fertilizer?
Think of it in terms of your own body: can you get vitamin C from a pill? Of course you can, somebody has conveniently isolated that one thing and packaged it up for you- it might even be tasty. If you are super deficient then by all means, load up the chewable tabs.
If I get my vitamin C from an orange then I get way more than just vitamin C- I get fiber, folate, potassium and a bunch of other good stuff and even a little bit of magic! The elements in combination have a synergy- a kind of mojo- that make them work better when they work together! These complex interactions are beginning to be recognized and studied and it’s just the way nature has always done it! It’s the same with your compost and organic matter.
Nature has already worked out the kinks in the system whether it’s oranges or a work force of billions of soil-bound mico-organisms. Accepting nature as an ally and tapping into her flow is so much easier than fighting her. Feed your dirt and you’ll see that healthy soil brings sweeter fruit!