Monday, October 08, 2012

Growing Future Soil: Hemp & Mycelium

"Lord Buddha! How can one convey a lifetime study of plants and the earth to those who have not studied?" I asked.

"Plant the seed! Let it grow," he said.

Not only months of study and observation .. but years of study and observation .. perhaps guided by our ancestors .. revealed a vision of a future world, a future soil and man's future relationship with the earth under his feet.

Never destroy that which supports you!

Seeds of The Future
On October 8, 2012 .. only three media sites covered "news" that will transform the world. It's no big deal .. a small stream high in the mountains is the source of some of the largest rivers in the world. By the time the waters reach the lowlands, the river feeds many plants, trees, animals, fish and humans.

Bhutan: The First Organic Nation .. Epoch Times .. Arab News .. Global Post
The Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan, famed for seeking “happiness” for its citizens, is aiming to become the first nation in the world to turn its home-grown food and farmers 100-percent organic.
Bhutan may be the source of the "organic future" crossing the globe, feeding and nourishing the soil, plants, animals, insects, birds and humans... But further downstream a simple soil ecology will have to be practiced.

Growing Future Soil: Mycelium
Over sixty years of synthetic and chemical "fertilizers" and farming techniques have depleted agricultural soil of essential life-giving mycelium .. the probiotic health of the soil.

European fertilizer market is expected to grow to €15.3 billion by 2018.

Look at any rich no-till / no-dig natural forest soil. Soil created by a forest of trees is light, airy, rich in fungi, mycelium and little tiny living microbes.

Video: Paul Stamets .. Six ways mushrooms can save the world

Growing Future Soil: Hemp
Hemp can be used as a food rotation crop, enriching the topsoil, increasing the soil's moisture retention .. can purify and clean the soil.
Hemp does not deplete the soil as many other industrial crops do. It actually enriches the soil as it sheds its leaves throughout the growing season, creating a mature compost. This not only enriches the topsoil, but helps it to retain moisture, adding to the fact that hemp requires about half the amount of water that other agricultural crops do. - Hemp Purifies the soil
Hemp can be planted all over the European countryside, increasing local innovation and productivity. At a local level, the dried Hemp stalks can be used to make paper (saving trees), can be pressed into a wood substitute, used as insulation and as a durable building material, woven into cloth, transformed into fuel and used as a chemical cleanup. TreeHugger

Growing Future Soil
Soil grows - just like a tree .. like a plant .. like any compound on Earth. Organic compost is one example of "soil growth" .. on the forest floor soil grows. Natural organic soil is alive .. rich in nutrients .. rich in micro-organisms, fungi and a living network of mycelium.

The future of agriculture is the farmer as a steward of the soil, a steward of the land and as a steward of health. Not only the health of humans .. but a steward of the health of plants, fungi, insects, trees, waterways, birds, fish, plankton and the earth itself.

It is not really agri-culture - to cultivate "a field" .. but it is ertho-culture .. to cultivate the earth. A single minded only-for-myself approach to cultivating food (and animals) has led to a worldwide depletion of the Earth's soil.

Few people in the West today would understand the significance of Bhutan deciding to go organic by 2020 .. unless the seed travels in the winds of time to plant the organic seed in other lands by 2050 .. Who knows ??

"The increasing desolation of nature, the exhaustion of resources, the uneasiness and disintegration of the human spirit, all have been brought about by humanity’s trying to accomplish something." - Masanobu Fukuoka