Soil biology can be thought of as ‘the soil food web’ - it's the living part of the soil.
When managing land with the purpose of production, it is important to respect that soil health involves life.
As farmers we know all too well that in the growing season conditions are sometimes suboptimal, whether we like it or not. Working in these conditions, like harvesting in wet weather, can be harmful for soil life. We can provide tools that feed existing biology and act like a probiotic to support biological processes in the soil and stimulate nature's own defences to help safeguard plants against pests, diseases and environmental stressors. Think about compost, humates, fish hydrolysates, bacteria, fungal spores etc.
We know that in order to grow something we have to feed it. But it’s not only providing adequate levels of individual nutrients to your soil that is important - the balance between the nutrients has a significant impact on the availability of each individual nutrient. Secondly, nutrients come in many different shapes and forms. Potassium/potash fertiliser for example, can be applied as a sulphate, carbonate or as a chloride, each behaving in their own way. When we determine what nutrients are required, we not only look at what gives a good yield response, but we also look at creating sustainable soils by improving soil fertility long term. If this is done well, it will help you reduce your reliance on synthetically produced nitrogen, enhance carbon sequestration, and create the right balance for nutrient dense crops.
The nutrient inputs we use are natural and designed to cooperate with natural soil biology when applied in the right doses. The overuse or misuse of fertilisers can cause environmental degradation.
The physical aspect of your soil is often largely influenced by its texture, which is determined by its natural characteristics (such as the parent material and clay content), and that is largely determined by your location. But this is not to say that the physical side of your soil cannot be influenced. For example, negative impacts of hard pan caused by compaction, can be mitigated by using specific plant species; and ensuring a balance of calcium and magnesium will also improve your ability to build good soil structure.
To manage the physical side of your soil environment we can:
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