In a previous blog a few months ago, we explored the interdependency of plants, insects and birds. When I was at New England Grows, I was reminded of plant’s interdependency with soil. This relationship was sensationalized in 2006 with the publication of Jeff Lowenfels and Wayne Lewis’s book Teaming with Microbes: A Gardener’s Guide to the Soil Food Web.
I remember when Lowenfels came and spoke at The New York Botanic Garden. He was one of many proponents for healthy soils. T. Fleisher, Elaine Ingham and James Sottilo were just a few members of the healthy soil brigade who were working the speaker circuit, educating and informing us on their work on soil microbiology, compost, compost tea, and soil restoration.
At New England Grows, the Foreman of the Grounds at Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Chris Roddick, gave an informative talk that took me back to the heydays when soil was exciting and alive. Roddick started with a reminder of what we often do wrong: over-fertilize or fertilize without a purpose, over-sanitize (by removing leaves, etc.), create mulch mounds, drive heavy equipment up to the base of trees, and garden in the rain. read more »