Guide To Sustainable Soil Management

BuildingSoilsOriginal A thorough, free, easy-to-read guide for ecological soil management which includes nutrient management, nutrient cycles, cover crops and other soil-improving practices. “Building Soils for Better Crops is a one-of-a-kind, practical guide to ecological soil management, now expanded and in full color. It provides step-by-step information on soil-improving practices as well as in-depth background—from what soil is to the importance of organic matter. Case studies of farmers from across the country provide inspiring examples of how soil—and whole farms—have been renewed through these techniques. A must-read for farmers, educators and students alike.” LINK: http://www.sare.org/Learning-Center/Books/Building-Soils-for-Better-Crops-3rd-Edition DIRECT DOWNLOAD: https://planetpermaculture.files.wordpress.com/2015/04/buildingsoilsforbettercrops.pdf

Life In The Soil: A Perspective To Healthy Farming

“Bacteria, fungi, protozoa, nematodes, earthworms, and what lies between—a healthy ecosystem underfoot is key to the vigor of life above ground. A leader in soil microbiology and author of the USDA’s Soil Biology Primer, Dr. Elaine Ingham will detail the complex interactions within the soil that make clean water, clean air, and life for higher creatures possible. Learn to foster and sustain the proper balance of soil organisms, and hear how compost tea can stimulate plant productivity and stave off disease. Dr. Ingham is also the founder of Soil Foodweb, Inc. and the former chief scientist for the Rodale Institute.”

I found this to be an excellent and completely fascinating introduction to the soil food web, I’d highly recomend it. This comes in 5 parts and is around 3 hours long in total, I know I’ll be listening to this one more than once thats for sure, check it out and be prepared to learn a lot from this fasinating woman.

PART 2: https://vimeo.com/90902847
PART 3: https://vimeo.com/90908150
PART 4: https://vimeo.com/90913699
PART 5: https://vimeo.com/90913700

Teaching Manual On Organic Farming And Gardening

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I found this “resource for instructors” when browsing the net and thought it would be useful for all, teacher or not. The document is 700 pages long so I’ve not had a chance to review it all yet but it’s an outstanding free resource, it also proives a good structure for those to test their knowledge on organic growing. They are also pointpoint presentations and videos on the link below so be sure to check those free resources out too.

“This manual is revolutionary, because of how dominant the chemical- and resource-intensive paradigmfor growing plants has become. As the world population grows and our climate changes, agricultural and food systems are ever more stressed and will be so for years to come. Diversified farming systems employing the techniques described in this manual absolutely can feed the world, as many studies continue to prove. If the future of food and agriculture is at all sustainable and just, it is far more likely to employ the methods in this manual than so-called conventional agricultural techniques. But perhaps most important for you, our readers, this manual is useful because it works. The practices described here can be employed in a variety of climates, soils, and educational settings. The information on soil science provides a solid grounding for the practices described, and the units on social and environmental issues offer a broader context for those interested in sustainable agriculture.”

LINK: http://casfs.ucsc.edu/about/publications/Teaching-Organic-Farming/index.html
EBOOK: http://casfs.ucsc.edu/about/publications/Teaching-Organic-Farming/PDF-downloads/TOFG-all.pdf
DIRECT DOWNLOAD: https://planetpermaculture.files.wordpress.com/2015/03/teaching_organic_farming_pdf.pdf

Setting Up Your Own Edible Rooftop Garden Book

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“Our step-by-step guide is the ideal resource to assist you in the creation of your own rooftop garden, and to ensure its continued horticultural and social success! The guide is written for groups, individuals and establishments that would like to create an urban edible rooftop garden for educational, social, therapeutic or environmental reasons by may not have access to the necessary space to do so in soil. Our objective is to facilitate the process of creation of these edible natural urban oases so that more and more people will learn about rooftop gardening to discover its benefits.”

LINK: http://www.rooftopgardens.alternatives.ca/resources/guides
PDF BOOK: http://www.rooftopgardens.alternatives.ca/sites/rooftopgardens.alternatives.ca/files/ready_to_grow.pdf.pdf
DIRECT DOWNLOAD: https://planetpermaculture.files.wordpress.com/2015/03/ready_to_grow_rooftop_gardens_pdf.pdf

An Illustrated Guide To Common Plant Diseases

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I’ve just found an excellent website for the most common plant diseases, it’s an amazingly well illustrated document that everyone into Horticulture/Agriculture should check out and bookmark. One of the best resources I’ve come across to date for photographs and illustrations, well worth a look not only when you’re having problems but also to help familiarise yourself with them so you know what to look out for.

It covers the symptoms and signs, pathogen biology, disease cycle, epidemiology, disease management, and scientific, economic and social significance of major plant diseases.

LINK: https://www.apsnet.org/EDCENTER/INTROPP/LESSONS/Pages/default.aspx
FURTHER READING: https://www.apsnet.org/EDCENTER/INTROPP/Pages/default.aspx

Interview With The Market Gardener

Another fantastic interview by Curtis Stone, this time he’s with Jean-Martin Fortier the author of The Market Gardener. Its basically a discussion about his lifestyle growing food for a living and the ups and downs of running of an intensive organic and profitable small scale farming enterprise. His book comes very highly rated by many people in the Horticulture/Urban Farming world, I’m going to be buying it my self as soon as the funds become available. I loved this interview, very enlightening.

Read the first chapter (20 pages) of the book here: http://www.themarketgardener.com/flipbook/

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LINK: http://www.themarketgardener.com/
BOOK: http://www.bookdepository.com/Market-Gardener-Jean-Martin-Fortier/9780865717657

Toxin Produced By Oyster Mushroom Effective Against Nematodes

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The toxin produced by pleurotus ostreatus reduces the head size of nematodes.

“Many detrimental nematodes exist, including parasitic plant and animal nematodes. The Pleurotus ostreatus (oyster mushroom) is a famous mushroom that preys upon live nematodes. However, there have been no details reported on the mechanism of this predatory activity. Therefore, we investigated the predatory relationship between the nematode and P. ostreatus as a potential way of exterminating other various detrimental nematodes. Upon invasion by the nematode, the mushroom defends itself by causing the nematode’s head to shrink in size (anti-nematode activity). Our data suggest that this anti-nematode mechanism is associated with the peroxide of linoleic acid.”

Maybe this could be useful for things such as root-knot nematodes. Growing Oyster Mushrooms on your patch could turn out to not only tasty but also act as a natural “pesticide” as well. I’ll certainly be inoculating a few logs for the allotment this summer, maybe even some burlap sacks like Paul Statmets mentions in the last video, I believe he said the weaving is conductive to the fungi developing quickly.

SOURCE: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18379043