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Green Manure

by Robert Kourik

You say you want to garden all-naturally, but the closest source of animal manure is many miles away? Then green manuring might be for you. Green manuring is the process of tilling fresh green plants into the soil to help make it drain better and allow it to hold onto more moisture, with an added bonus – the plants, as they decay, act as a readily available fertilizer. Green manuring is also pretty darn close to free fertilizer – discounting the cost of a few seeds and plenty of elbow grease. Learning how the natural cycle of decomposition works means you’ll know exactly what part of the cycle to influence, how to speed up the natural processes, and how to improve the soil in either the short or the long term.


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Book Review: Healing Earth

Healing Earth – An Ecologist’s Journey of Innovation and Environmental Stewardship Written by John Todd Published by North Atlantic Books, 2019 Reviewed by Cindy Goulder It’s easy to be overwhelmed with despair by the many degradations of our natural world and the tumultuous effects expected of the changing climate. But John Todd is not despairing….

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Certification Journey at Dancing Tree

by Margot Taylor Sustainability implies that the two-acre subdivision with the charming home and expansive lawn is a paradigm that must change. The whole American landscape ideology needs to change. What does this change look like? What is a sustainable landscape? To answer these questions and for other reasons, I chose to enter my property…

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Drought-Tolerant? Think Native!

by Carol E. Becker In the upper Midwest, we don’t often think of strictly drought-tolerant gardens, because we have adequate seasonal rain. But that rain comes in the spring and fall, and we typically have hot, dry weather in July and August. Our best strategy for creating gardens that can withstand midsummer drought is to…

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Water and Big Brains

by Mike Nadeau So, water: two molecules of Hydrogen, one molecule of Oxygen. It’s a huge topic. I cannot think of anything that is living or has lived that is or was not dependent on it. Think of that: all life depends upon water. How fragile an arrangement but how elegantly Mother Nature provides. But…

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The Science of Soil Biology during Drought: ELA Conference Takeaways

Session review by K. Miho Connolly The year 2016 was characterized by precipitation amounts well below average, coupled with record high temperatures. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, 54% of the Northeast was in “moderate, severe, or extreme” drought conditions on December 1, 2016, after eight consecutive warmer-than-normal months (NRCC). Despite a slightly wetter than…

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