Archive for March, 2009

Why Not Use Chemicals?

It’s all about soil and health…
– Chemical fertilizers cannot restore soil fertility. They do not work on the soil but are enforcedly imbibed by plants, poisoning both plant and soil. They destroy (the soil’s) physical properties, and therefore its life. (Dr. Alexis Carrel – “Man, the Unknown”)

– Toxic farm chemicals are radiomimetric in that they ape the character of radiation. The damage (to humans) resulting from nuclear radiation is the same as the use of toxic genetic chemicals. And the use of fungicides of organic synthesis annually causes the same damage to present and future generations as atomic fallout from 29 H-bombs of 14 megatons – damage equal to the fallout of 14,500 atomic bombs of the Hiroshima type. In America, during the 1970’s, yearly use of toxic genetic chemicals was about 453,000 tons, which caused damage equal to atomic fallout from 145 H-bombs of 14 megatons, or 72,000 atomic bombs of the Hiroshima type. (Amerigo Mosca, Italian Chemist)

– Our attempts to grow crops by a system of ‘hydroponics in soil’ are doomed to failure. By adding easily soluble plant foods to the soil we are not, in fact, helping the plant at all, we merely get the worst of both worlds. A fertilizer, in the full sense of the word, renders the soil more fertile. To call nitrogenous (chemicals) fertilizers is a misnomer, they decrease long-term fertility – they are, in fact, merely a stimulant and need to be recognized as such. (P.H. Hainsworth – “Secrets of an Expert Organic Gardener”)

– No amount of artificial fertilizer can compensate for the loss (of organic matter in the soil). The collapse of (soil) structure, of course, leads to compacting of the soil and loss of that very vital soil function, aeration, without which plants will not grow. Hence the urge for deeper ploughing to create artificial aeration. Unfortunately, this artificial structure either dries into hard clods or slumps into a semi-liquid mass with the first heavy rain, and, as a result, it is difficult or impossible to get a tilth. Microbial and worm activity is lost and no plant foods are released by natural agencies. Such artificial (fertilizers) as are added are rapidly available for a short time but soon become fixed or are attacked by the denitrifying bacteria (which can work without air), so that long before the crop matures the supply is exhausted, however much is put in. (P.H. Hainsworth – “Secrets of an Expert Organic Gardener”)

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Why Organic?

It’s all about soil and health…
– So long as one feeds on foods from unhealthy soil, the spirit will lack the stamina to free itself from the prison of the body. (Rudolf Steiner – “Agriculture”)

– Soil is the basis for all human life. All of life will be either healthy or unhealthy according to the fertility of the soil. (Dr. Alexis Carrel – “Man, The Unknown”)

– Malnutrition begins with the soil. Buoyant human health depends on wholesome food, and this can only come from fertile and productive soils. (Dr. Alexis Carrel – “Man, The Unknown”)

– In soil properly nourished with adequate supplies of humus, crops do not suffer from disease and do not require poisonous sprays to keep off parasites; that animals fed on those plants develop a high degree of disease resistance; and that man, nurtured with such plants and animals, can reach an extraordinary standard of health, able to resist disease and infection from whatever cause it may derive. (Peter Tomkins and Christopher Bird – “Secrets of the Soil’)

– There is now a good deal of evidence from practical results to show that farming methods based on (organic) principles have a value distinctly above normal methods. Such evidence may be found in crop yields, long term fertility, nutritional values of produce, plant and animal health, and cash savings in cultivations. (P. H. Hainsworth – “Secrets of an Expert Organic Gardener”)

– In order to produce good corps, plants need a steady and liberal release of nitrogenous compounds, potash and phosphates, and all other necessary adjuncts to the plant’s health. All this is provided, under natural conditions, by one means – through the activity of soil organisms. These in turn require food, mainly as a source of energy. There is a great distinction here – the plant provides its own energy from light and often some to spare for symbiotic organisms. The microorganism has to find its energy from ready-made materials but can often obtain its own mineral requirements direct from the soil particles….This energy supply consists of carbohydrates which are in turn plant remains, plant skeletons. (P.H. Hainsworth – “Secrets of an Expert Organic Gardener”)

– Organic matter may be called the constitution of the soil. Insects and disease are the symptoms of a failing crop, not the cause. The use of poisonous sprays is an act of desperation in a dying agriculture. (Dr. William A. Albrecht, Chairman, Department of Soils, Univ. of Missouri)

– Crop losses in dry weather, or during mild cold snaps, are not so much the result of drought and cold as of nutrient deficiency. NPK formulas, as legislated and enforced by State Departments of Agriculture, mean malnutrition, attack by insects, bacteria, and fungi, weed takeover, crop losses in dry weather, and general loss of mental acuity in the population, leading to degenerative metabolic disease and early death. (Dr. William A. Albrecht, Chairman, Department of Soils, Univ. of Missouri)

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