Kim Tip - Healthy Soil !
Do you give much thought to our earth's soil? The secret to successful living is in the soil. This is an in-depth topic and much more then just dirt, it is the stuff from which we draw our nourishment and create our surroundings. The foundation of our life on the Earth.
Good quality soil could happen naturally (did for 1000's of years), but its based on one main equation. What you take out, you must put back in. This is what organic farming does it puts back nutrients into the earth, it doesn't leave it stripped and "lifeless" like conventional farming relying on pesticides and herbicides (evil monsanto & government not protecting small farmers).
The ongoing addition of organic matter and compost provides soil with the texture, structure and nutrients needed to create a positive environment for plant growth. Compost feeds the soil, builds structure and helps provides nutrients for your plants.
What is soil made up of exactly? It is a balanced combo of many materials;
- particles of minerals and rock,
- decaying and decomposed (humus or compost) organic matter;
- living organisms including microscopic bacteria and fungi as well as larger creatures like earthworms;
- air and water.
In short the fertile surface material of the earth which is capable of supporting plant growth.
So in taking care of the earth we need to take care of our soil as a apart of a healthy ecosystem.
Some facts about our farmland and topsoil.
- “Only 0.5 percent of all of Canada's land is considered class 1 farmland (according to the Canada Land Inventory), which means it has no significant limitations for farming and has the highest productivity for a variety of crops. More than half of this land is found in Ontario.
- Despite its obvious importance, Ontario is loosing its agricultural land base at a rapid rate as many farms go out of production every year.
- Urban sprawl and rural non-farm development are contributing to the annual loss of thousands of acres of farmland.
- The demand for flat, cleared, agricultural land is also very affordable to developers who want to accommodate urban growth.
- Most times its more financially profitable in the long term for a farmer to sell his or her land knowing that it may be converted to some non-agricultural land use, than to continue farming.
- In the (GTA) alone, more than 2,000 farms and 150,000 acres of farmland were lost to production in the two decades between 1976 and 1996.
- This represented approximately 18% of Ontario's Class 1 farmland.
- We know that the amount of farmland in the GTA decreased by at least 50,000 acres between 1996 and 2001 and that Ontario lost at least 600,000 acres of farmland between 1996 and 2006.
- It can take thousands of years to produce one centimeter of the topsoil needed for agricultural production. For this reason, Ontario's farmland should be seen as a limited natural resource, to be managed and protected.” (ontariofarmlandtrust.ca)