Archive | Soil Health

Humic Substances: Markers of a Healthy Soil

by Dr. Elham A. Ghabbour and Dr. Geoffrey Davies Natural landscaping depends to a large extent on healthy soil. In this context ‘healthy’ means that the soil is carbon- and nutrient-rich and that it retains water but drains well. It’s important to know that soil carbon consists of two main pools, one of which is […]

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Soil as Carbon Storehouse: New Weapon in Climate Fight?

This article first appeared in Yale Environment 360.  by Judith D. Schwartz In the 19th century, as land-hungry pioneers steered their wagon trains westward across the United States, they encountered a vast landscape of towering grasses that nurtured deep, fertile soils. Today, just three percent of North America’s tallgrass prairie remains. Its disappearance has had a dramatic impact […]

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A Lesson on Connections: “Enhancing Ecosystem Dynamics for Trees” with Michael Phillips

by Emma Vautour As a student of ecology and an aspiring ecological landscaper, it was a privilege to attend the 2014 ELA conference and learn from many of the leading figures in the field. The conference rooms seemed to reverberate with the buzz of so many excited earth-enthusiasts, communally appreciating what fascinates them most. The […]

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Dealing with Soil Compaction

by Nina Bassuk Soil compaction is the single most difficult and harmful environmental or abiotic condition that a tree or shrub can experience. There are other environmental problems such as drought, cold temperatures, poor drainage, or lack of sunlight, but for the most part these problems can be overcome by appropriate plant selection. In the […]

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Book Review: Teaming with Nutrients

Written by Jeff Lowenfels Published by Timber Press ©2013 Reviewed by George Batchelor What do plants eat?  In his latest book, Teaming with Nutrients, Jeff Lowenfels writes for the gardener who is fascinated by plants and wants to better understand and visualize the world of soil molecules and root hairs, of hydrogen ions, covalent bonds, […]

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Celebrity Rehab for Lawns and Soil

by Phil Haynes Everyone can empathize with the trauma a person must go through to withdraw from chemical dependencies, and I believe there are some real similarities with rehabilitating your lawn and soil, though not as bad as what you might see on Celebrity Rehab! Converting a lawn from traditional (chemical) care to organic care […]

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Carried Away: A Keynote Speaker Finishes His Message

by Jeff Lowenfels Authors spend a lot of time by themselves, as was abundantly apparent when I got a chance to Keynote at the ELA’s 2013 Conference on the subject matter of my new book, Teaming With Nutrients: The Organic Gardener’s Guide to Optimizing Plant Nutrition. I found myself gushing with excitement as I was […]

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Are Rain Gardens Mini Toxic Cleanup Sites?

by Lisa Stiffler Originally posted on Sightline Daily, January 22, 2013, by Sightline Fellow Lisa Stiffler, this post is part of the research project: Stormwater Solutions: Curbing Toxic Runoff. If you’re concerned about water pollution, you’ve likely heard this message: The water that gushes off our roofs, driveways, streets, and landscaped yards is to blame […]

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