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  • tiakd14477
    Hopefully it isn t off base to send an introduction. :) We live on a 160 acre farm, though the guys (brothers and Dad) work in town in a home business. We are
    Message 1 of 27 , Nov 22, 2002
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      Hopefully it isn't off base to send an introduction. :)
      We live on a 160 acre farm, though the guys (brothers and Dad) work
      in town in a home business. We are slowly moving towards self
      sufficiency and a simpler life style.
      I'm the animal keeper and the farmer.
      We have 3 Jerseys, 10 Dexters, 1 Dexter hereford cross, horses,
      sheep, turkeys, chickens, cats, dogs etc. I would like to get a few
      goats and bees but am finding I am keeping busy enough right now. :)
      Approximately 70 acres is native pasture that has been over-grazed by
      the previous owners. 40 acres was planted to alfalfa/timothy just
      before we bought the place 2 years ago, and 50 acres was a field
      planted to barley.
      While searching for help in knowing what to do with the 50 acre ex-
      barley field, one person wrote to me and said to try devoting it
      to "natural farming". That got me interested, because everybody else
      had given me the advice to apply Round Up 3 x and plant to good
      grass/alfalfa mix (We don't use round up or other chemicals or
      pesticides).
      Others said to keep it ploughed, but my research for gardening and
      otherwise made me realize I am not interested ploughing or exposing
      the precious soil to our severe drying winds with no roots or plant
      material to hold it together and absorb our infrequent moisture.
      Also, it is a practise that adds nothing to the soil.
      We even had a couple of threats to deal with the field and not let it
      get weedy, or we would be reported to the government who would apply
      Round Up and charge us for it!!
      Due to lack of time, we let it go wild last year. Well, as it had
      been native pasture 3 years ago and only been Round Up'ed one year,
      it was very likely to turn back to native pasture readily with a
      little bit of help. I could see patches of grass and alfalfa coming
      up, so we let the weeds grow (I don't mind weeds, as I consider them
      herbs and beneficial variety in my animal's diets), cut them before
      they headed and let the patches of grass go to seed and do what they
      wanted. It isn't fenced, or I would have turned the cattle on it as
      they would have thrived on the Johnson grass, quack grass, thistles
      and wild oats. One of my projects to do this spring.
      Anyway, we are planning on planting as many trees as possible on this
      barren property - prairie farming at it's finest (ie. rip up trees
      and bush and fill in sloughs) - including fruit and beneficial bushes
      for wildlife. We are also looking at a few ponds for attracting
      wildlife. But it is all overwhelming - being completely new to
      farming - and we are going slowly. Plus being expensive. :)
      I have been on a few organic lists and spoken to a few about organic
      farming, but found I am more interested in a sustainable agriculture
      than just organic - though as I said we don't use chemicals or
      pesticides on our property, us or in our animals.
      I believe we are to be good stewards of what God has given us,
      including giving back to the land more than it has given us - if
      possible.
      My first thing is to get the books. Are they available anywhere in
      Canada? Is there somebody who sells them together?
      Also, is it possible to have hayland that is not fertilized
      chemically? I have not found anybody who does not apply chemical
      fertilizers, and I told my family we will let it do what it wants -
      our motto *G*. We do have a bit of manure to apply - need to get a
      spreader of some type - but dealing with hayland unconventionally is
      not heard of here. Even organic hayland is fertilized with their
      organic chemicals. I don't think that is a very balanced circle, and
      would like to be as natural as possible.
      We do only take one cutting and leave 18inches standing to mulch in
      the fall and hold the snow for moisture in the spring. Everybody
      raved about the health of the fields and how quickly it grew compared
      to others, but say it is only a matter of a few years before we will
      have a barren field, as the alfalfa will get root bound and needs
      fertilizer to be productable etc. I wonder what they did before
      fertilizers came into existence? I imagine they would have applied
      manure and had more balanced farms ie. not all arable land. I guess
      if alfalfa is hard to grow naturally, we would rather eliminate it
      from the hayfield.
      I'm also interested in raising grains the "natural farming" method,
      as we would like to have a few acres for our chickens and our own
      use. Right now, the idea is foreign, and I don't quite understand how
      you apply it, but I'm looking forward to reading the books and
      getting ideas.
      Some of our interests are straw bale houses, alternative energy -
      including animal power - herbs, gardening, cheese making, making our
      own household products and soaps, rotational grazing, no-till
      gardening etc.
      Supper, so I must run.
      Regards
      Heather
    • Larry Haftl
      Hello Heather, And welcome to the list. From your post it sounds like you just hit the mother lode (this list and the associated website). ... The perfect way
      Message 2 of 27 , Nov 22, 2002
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        Hello Heather,

        And welcome to the list. From your post it sounds like you just hit
        the mother lode (this list and the associated website).

        At Saturday, 23 November 2002, tiakd14477 wrote:

        >Hopefully it isn't off base to send an introduction. :)

        The perfect way to start.


        >While searching for help in knowing what to do with the 50 acre ex-
        >barley field, one person wrote to me and said to try devoting it
        >to "natural farming". That got me interested, because everybody else
        >had given me the advice to apply Round Up 3 x and plant to good
        >grass/alfalfa mix (We don't use round up or other chemicals or
        >pesticides).

        As you will see, you have already started on the right path.


        >Others said to keep it ploughed, but my research for gardening and
        >otherwise made me realize I am not interested ploughing or exposing
        >the precious soil to our severe drying winds with no roots or plant
        >material to hold it together and absorb our infrequent moisture.
        >Also, it is a practise that adds nothing to the soil.

        In fact, you are more than halfway there... Fukuoka's four principles
        are no tilling, no weeding, no fertilizers (other than manures),
        and no pesticides.


        >We even had a couple of threats to deal with the field and not let it
        >get weedy, or we would be reported to the government who would apply
        >Round Up and charge us for it!!

        For what it's worth, most farmers are still locked into the destructive
        practices you mentioned, but there is enough evidence to support
        your position if anyone tried to force you to use herbicides on your
        land. Not to worry.

        >Due to lack of time, we let it go wild last year. Well, as it had
        >been native pasture 3 years ago and only been Round Up'ed one year,
        >it was very likely to turn back to native pasture readily with a
        >little bit of help. I could see patches of grass and alfalfa coming
        >up, so we let the weeds grow (I don't mind weeds, as I consider them
        >herbs and beneficial variety in my animal's diets), cut them before
        >they headed and let the patches of grass go to seed and do what they
        >wanted. It isn't fenced, or I would have turned the cattle on it as
        >they would have thrived on the Johnson grass, quack grass, thistles
        >and wild oats. One of my projects to do this spring.

        Again, for what it's worth, you are already a lot further along in
        your thinking and understanding than I was before I encountered Fukuoka.
        One warning -- it may not return to native pasture because of what
        has been done to it previously, and other conditions. In his book
        "The Natural Way of Farming" Fukuoka goes over this in detail and
        provides very detailed crop rotation schemes that help you enable
        the soil to return to a more natural, or "wild", condition.

        >Anyway, we are planning on planting as many trees as possible on this
        >barren property - prairie farming at it's finest (ie. rip up trees
        >and bush and fill in sloughs) - including fruit and beneficial bushes
        >for wildlife. We are also looking at a few ponds for attracting
        >wildlife. But it is all overwhelming - being completely new to
        >farming - and we are going slowly. Plus being expensive. :)

        This just keeps getting better and better. If I wasn't happy where
        I am I'd be asking if you need any boarders/workers/whatever...



        >I have been on a few organic lists and spoken to a few about organic
        >farming, but found I am more interested in a sustainable agriculture
        >than just organic - though as I said we don't use chemicals or
        >pesticides on our property, us or in our animals.
        >I believe we are to be good stewards of what God has given us,
        >including giving back to the land more than it has given us - if
        >possible.

        And better and better...:)

        >My first thing is to get the books. Are they available anywhere in
        >Canada? Is there somebody who sells them together?

        Yes. All three are available for about $20US each, and while all
        three are worth reading, I urge you to start with the "how-to" book,
        which is "The Natural Way of Gardening". It has all of the philosophy
        and logical foundation material, but it also has very detailed info
        on how to help soil recover from chemical farming and return to a
        natural state, also detailed info on starting an orchard, and about
        tying it all together. Go to the Fukuoka Farming website, check the
        links section under books and other materials, and you will find
        a number of book dealers selling the books. I know that both of the
        US sources have the books in stock. While you are waiting for the
        book(s) to arrive you might want to read the material on the website
        to get you started.

        There are two URLs for the website:

        http://www.FukuokaNaturalFarming.org

        and

        http://www.larryhaftl.com/fukuoka



        >Also, is it possible to have hayland that is not fertilized
        >chemically?

        YES! As you will find out.


        >We do only take one cutting and leave 18inches standing to mulch in
        >the fall and hold the snow for moisture in the spring. Everybody
        >raved about the health of the fields and how quickly it grew compared
        >to others, but say it is only a matter of a few years before we will
        >have a barren field, as the alfalfa will get root bound and needs
        >fertilizer to be productable etc. I wonder what they did before
        >fertilizers came into existence? I imagine they would have applied
        >manure and had more balanced farms ie. not all arable land. I guess
        >if alfalfa is hard to grow naturally, we would rather eliminate it
        >from the hayfield.

        As you will find out, "they" are full of manure, and you have stumbled
        onto a superior method of cultivation. It's the mulch...

        >I'm also interested in raising grains the "natural farming" method,
        >as we would like to have a few acres for our chickens and our own
        >use. Right now, the idea is foreign, and I don't quite understand how
        >you apply it, but I'm looking forward to reading the books and
        >getting ideas.

        This can be done. The book gives you a LOT of information on exactly
        how to do this. Fukuoka is a bit short on vegetable growing, but
        he really covers field crops/grains and orchards.

        >Some of our interests are straw bale houses, alternative energy -
        >including animal power - herbs, gardening, cheese making, making our
        >own household products and soaps, rotational grazing, no-till
        >gardening etc.

        There are several kindered souls here. Robert Hayes, one of the book
        sources, is living in New Mexico completely off the grid in a straw
        bale house and his website has a bunch of info about it. His website
        is at (appropriately)

        http://strawrevolution.com

        Again, welcome and looking forward to hearing about your progress.

        Larry Haftl
        larry@...
        http://larryhaftl.com/fukuoka
        http://FukuokaNaturalFarming.org
      • Robertson
        Hello Heather, I m not a farmer and i don t know much. Good luck on your quest. Your post outlined the idyll of many people worldwide. Wise old farm hands such
        Message 3 of 27 , Nov 23, 2002
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          Hello Heather,
          I'm not a farmer and i don't know much. Good luck on your quest. Your
          post outlined the idyll of many people worldwide. Wise old farm hands
          such as Wendell Berry have published a lot of good advice and insight
          on the web and in print. Google searches will help you. (You found
          this bunch).
          You may want to do a little research on that Johnson grass (Sorghum
          halepense) which you mentioned. It is toxic to livestock under
          certain conditions: during hot, dry periods in summer and again after
          first frost. Much work is being done to control that noxious imported
          species, including studies of natural controls such as "smut".
          Being a purist in any endeavour closes doors on some answers to
          questions. Nature is not purist, maintaining an open-ended response
          to difficulties, relentlessly trying endless means to accomplish its
          purposes, never accepting limits to any right use of consciousness
          available to its pursuits. Perceptive analytical creativity can
          overcome limited options and foster elegant solutions. Take the best
          and leave the rest.
          Bless U,
          Alan

          --- In fukuoka_farming@y..., "tiakd14477" <sentree@h...> wrote:
          > Hopefully it isn't off base to send an introduction. :)
          > We live on a 160 acre farm, though the guys (brothers and Dad) work
          > in town in a home business. We are slowly moving towards self
          > sufficiency and a simpler life style.
          > I'm the animal keeper and the farmer.
          > We have 3 Jerseys, 10 Dexters, 1 Dexter hereford cross, horses,
          > sheep, turkeys, chickens, cats, dogs etc. I would like to get a few
          > goats and bees but am finding I am keeping busy enough right now. :)
          > Approximately 70 acres is native pasture that has been over-grazed
          by
          > the previous owners. 40 acres was planted to alfalfa/timothy just
          > before we bought the place 2 years ago, and 50 acres was a field
          > planted to barley.
          > While searching for help in knowing what to do with the 50 acre ex-
          > barley field, one person wrote to me and said to try devoting it
          > to "natural farming". That got me interested, because everybody
          else
          > had given me the advice to apply Round Up 3 x and plant to good
          > grass/alfalfa mix (We don't use round up or other chemicals or
          > pesticides).
          > Others said to keep it ploughed, but my research for gardening and
          > otherwise made me realize I am not interested ploughing or exposing
          > the precious soil to our severe drying winds with no roots or plant
          > material to hold it together and absorb our infrequent moisture.
          > Also, it is a practise that adds nothing to the soil.
          > We even had a couple of threats to deal with the field and not let
          it
          > get weedy, or we would be reported to the government who would
          apply
          > Round Up and charge us for it!!
          > Due to lack of time, we let it go wild last year. Well, as it had
          > been native pasture 3 years ago and only been Round Up'ed one year,
          > it was very likely to turn back to native pasture readily with a
          > little bit of help. I could see patches of grass and alfalfa coming
          > up, so we let the weeds grow (I don't mind weeds, as I consider
          them
          > herbs and beneficial variety in my animal's diets), cut them before
          > they headed and let the patches of grass go to seed and do what
          they
          > wanted. It isn't fenced, or I would have turned the cattle on it as
          > they would have thrived on the Johnson grass, quack grass, thistles
          > and wild oats. One of my projects to do this spring.
          > Anyway, we are planning on planting as many trees as possible on
          this
          > barren property - prairie farming at it's finest (ie. rip up trees
          > and bush and fill in sloughs) - including fruit and beneficial
          bushes
          > for wildlife. We are also looking at a few ponds for attracting
          > wildlife. But it is all overwhelming - being completely new to
          > farming - and we are going slowly. Plus being expensive. :)
          > I have been on a few organic lists and spoken to a few about
          organic
          > farming, but found I am more interested in a sustainable
          agriculture
          > than just organic - though as I said we don't use chemicals or
          > pesticides on our property, us or in our animals.
          > I believe we are to be good stewards of what God has given us,
          > including giving back to the land more than it has given us - if
          > possible.
          > My first thing is to get the books. Are they available anywhere in
          > Canada? Is there somebody who sells them together?
          > Also, is it possible to have hayland that is not fertilized
          > chemically? I have not found anybody who does not apply chemical
          > fertilizers, and I told my family we will let it do what it wants -
          > our motto *G*. We do have a bit of manure to apply - need to get a
          > spreader of some type - but dealing with hayland unconventionally
          is
          > not heard of here. Even organic hayland is fertilized with their
          > organic chemicals. I don't think that is a very balanced circle,
          and
          > would like to be as natural as possible.
          > We do only take one cutting and leave 18inches standing to mulch in
          > the fall and hold the snow for moisture in the spring. Everybody
          > raved about the health of the fields and how quickly it grew
          compared
          > to others, but say it is only a matter of a few years before we
          will
          > have a barren field, as the alfalfa will get root bound and needs
          > fertilizer to be productable etc. I wonder what they did before
          > fertilizers came into existence? I imagine they would have applied
          > manure and had more balanced farms ie. not all arable land. I guess
          > if alfalfa is hard to grow naturally, we would rather eliminate it
          > from the hayfield.
          > I'm also interested in raising grains the "natural farming" method,
          > as we would like to have a few acres for our chickens and our own
          > use. Right now, the idea is foreign, and I don't quite understand
          how
          > you apply it, but I'm looking forward to reading the books and
          > getting ideas.
          > Some of our interests are straw bale houses, alternative energy -
          > including animal power - herbs, gardening, cheese making, making
          our
          > own household products and soaps, rotational grazing, no-till
          > gardening etc.
          > Supper, so I must run.
          > Regards
          > Heather
        • Robertson
          Hello again Heather I forgot to mention in my previous reply that the One-Straw Revolution is available in the files section of this group. Someone else
          Message 4 of 27 , Nov 23, 2002
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            Hello again Heather
            I forgot to mention in my previous reply that "the One-Straw
            Revolution" is available in the "files" section of this group.
            Someone else knows where to find Masanobu Fukuoka's other books.
            I don't know if nature ever completely abandons any method it deploys
            in its strategy. My confusion begins with the observance of such
            things as the escalating series of responses in toxic
            predator/prey relationships, as an example. The closest thing to a
            sort of morality of nature seems to be that on a local scale, at
            least, if it works, do it. Seems to be the same for us; in a way, a
            sort of "if it feels good, do it" approach (can it not be said that
            morality is different for each of us?) I run in circles.
            best regards,
            Alan
            ps i'm very long-winded, all apologies. I'm working on it.
            Here's hoping that many others jump into the middle of this.
            Souscayrous?

            - In fukuoka_farming@y..., "tiakd14477" <sentree@h...> wrote:

            My first thing is to get the books. Are they available anywhere in
            > Canada? Is there somebody who sells them together?

            > Regards
            > Heather
          • emilia
            welcome heather, about the fields, the ones for pasture cannot be the same as the ones for grazing...try to organize the space considering the hay that u ll
            Message 5 of 27 , Nov 24, 2002
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              welcome heather,
              about the fields, the ones for pasture cannot be the same as the ones for grazing...try to organize the space considering the hay that u'll need for the long canadian winters.

              electric fencing is the easiest way to do rotational grazing & Allan Savory's "holistic resource management" a must book for animal husbundry as it is André Voisin's "soil, grass & cancer" book to understand the reasons for the ill health of "captive" animals (u can order this from ACRES USA (info@...)

              u may contact the Permaculture Activist for getting the names of people in canada involved with permaculture, they may also have the books u are looking for: pcactivist@...

              about alfalfa...(or any other perennial legume) if u want to allowd them long & healthy life: the first year of implantation don't give them ANY cutting until they've gone, not only to flower but to seed (at this growth phase the young roots receive plant nutrients when they need it most, at their beguinning of perennial life: potentially up to 2O years if respecting their growing needs...)
              That is only for the first year.
              From the 2nd year & beyond: give as many cuttings BEFORE THE FLOWER BUDS appear -as ur climate lets u- considering that u must allowd the plants to have a full growth cycle of going to flower & set the seed (during this time the plant is feeding its perennial roots & making nutrient reserves for strong spring pick up) BEFORE first frosts...(in canada u may only can have one cutting..., in the canary islands they can make 13...) if u handle ur alfalfa this way it will last for ever without having to touch the field again: as when u do the last cutting, having seeds in it, new plants have the possibility to start their life cycle so that u'll have a permanent field of multiage plants...

              grains raising: for ur climate u may also try the Bonfils method: permanent cereal field with no-till involved for cold climates. (u can request from "Permaculture Pyrenees, BP 217, F-11306 Limoux cedex, Francia, an english copy of this system, please include -in a well sealed & opaque enveloppe: 10 US dollars to cover for the spenses)

              fruit trees: starting them "on site" -at their final place- won't cost much money & it's the (almost) only way to give to the trees their double root system...(u can graft afterwards if need be): indicate their location by setting up over their sowing a (recycled) transparent plastic bottle to which u have removed the bottom so that it works as a "cloche", leave the top closed. this at the same time that indicates they are there: protects them from slugs, birds & other rodents...& don't forget to put a generous amount of mulch around them as well, (remove the bottle as soon as the young leaves touch the walls).
              think of each tree with the volume of a mature one, so that u won't put them too close together if their crowns volume is going to be at the same level...their main nutrition comes from the sun, don't set them up in a way that they shade their leaves & don't plan in a density that will force u to prune them...don't forget that each leave removed is a solar captor destroyed, besides the traumatism received & wounds open to infection, organize ur tree planting in a way that u won't need to prune later on (or very little & only when the new growth to remove is still green)

              animal power...a most efficient way to compact soils...only to be used over paths, either on permanent ridge-till fashion fields or in garden-raised-beds.

              if u are looking for the ecological zero-till for gardening please look the articles on synergistic agriculture at the http://wwwseedballs.com/hazelip.html or at: http://www.FukuokaNaturalFarming.org
              emilia

              ----- Original Message -----
              From: tiakd14477
              To: fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com
              Sent: Saturday, November 23, 2002 2:13 AM
              Subject: [fukuoka_farming] new member


              Hopefully it isn't off base to send an introduction. :)
              We live on a 160 acre farm, though the guys (brothers and Dad) work
              in town in a home business. We are slowly moving towards self
              sufficiency and a simpler life style.
              I'm the animal keeper and the farmer.
              We have 3 Jerseys, 10 Dexters, 1 Dexter hereford cross, horses,
              sheep, turkeys, chickens, cats, dogs etc. I would like to get a few
              goats and bees but am finding I am keeping busy enough right now. :)
              Approximately 70 acres is native pasture that has been over-grazed by
              the previous owners. 40 acres was planted to alfalfa/timothy just
              before we bought the place 2 years ago, and 50 acres was a field
              planted to barley.
              While searching for help in knowing what to do with the 50 acre ex-
              barley field, one person wrote to me and said to try devoting it
              to "natural farming". That got me interested, because everybody else
              had given me the advice to apply Round Up 3 x and plant to good
              grass/alfalfa mix (We don't use round up or other chemicals or
              pesticides).
              Others said to keep it ploughed, but my research for gardening and
              otherwise made me realize I am not interested ploughing or exposing
              the precious soil to our severe drying winds with no roots or plant
              material to hold it together and absorb our infrequent moisture.
              Also, it is a practise that adds nothing to the soil.
              We even had a couple of threats to deal with the field and not let it
              get weedy, or we would be reported to the government who would apply
              Round Up and charge us for it!!
              Due to lack of time, we let it go wild last year. Well, as it had
              been native pasture 3 years ago and only been Round Up'ed one year,
              it was very likely to turn back to native pasture readily with a
              little bit of help. I could see patches of grass and alfalfa coming
              up, so we let the weeds grow (I don't mind weeds, as I consider them
              herbs and beneficial variety in my animal's diets), cut them before
              they headed and let the patches of grass go to seed and do what they
              wanted. It isn't fenced, or I would have turned the cattle on it as
              they would have thrived on the Johnson grass, quack grass, thistles
              and wild oats. One of my projects to do this spring.
              Anyway, we are planning on planting as many trees as possible on this
              barren property - prairie farming at it's finest (ie. rip up trees
              and bush and fill in sloughs) - including fruit and beneficial bushes
              for wildlife. We are also looking at a few ponds for attracting
              wildlife. But it is all overwhelming - being completely new to
              farming - and we are going slowly. Plus being expensive. :)
              I have been on a few organic lists and spoken to a few about organic
              farming, but found I am more interested in a sustainable agriculture
              than just organic - though as I said we don't use chemicals or
              pesticides on our property, us or in our animals.
              I believe we are to be good stewards of what God has given us,
              including giving back to the land more than it has given us - if
              possible.
              My first thing is to get the books. Are they available anywhere in
              Canada? Is there somebody who sells them together?
              Also, is it possible to have hayland that is not fertilized
              chemically? I have not found anybody who does not apply chemical
              fertilizers, and I told my family we will let it do what it wants -
              our motto *G*. We do have a bit of manure to apply - need to get a
              spreader of some type - but dealing with hayland unconventionally is
              not heard of here. Even organic hayland is fertilized with their
              organic chemicals. I don't think that is a very balanced circle, and
              would like to be as natural as possible.
              We do only take one cutting and leave 18inches standing to mulch in
              the fall and hold the snow for moisture in the spring. Everybody
              raved about the health of the fields and how quickly it grew compared
              to others, but say it is only a matter of a few years before we will
              have a barren field, as the alfalfa will get root bound and needs
              fertilizer to be productable etc. I wonder what they did before
              fertilizers came into existence? I imagine they would have applied
              manure and had more balanced farms ie. not all arable land. I guess
              if alfalfa is hard to grow naturally, we would rather eliminate it
              from the hayfield.
              I'm also interested in raising grains the "natural farming" method,
              as we would like to have a few acres for our chickens and our own
              use. Right now, the idea is foreign, and I don't quite understand how
              you apply it, but I'm looking forward to reading the books and
              getting ideas.
              Some of our interests are straw bale houses, alternative energy -
              including animal power - herbs, gardening, cheese making, making our
              own household products and soaps, rotational grazing, no-till
              gardening etc.
              Supper, so I must run.
              Regards
              Heather








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            • Stephen Nasby
              Thanks for the welcome and suggestions, Emilia. A lot to absorb, and I will enjoy the sites you mentioned. One thing I had been going to mention to the group
              Message 6 of 27 , Nov 24, 2002
              • 0 Attachment
                Thanks for the welcome and suggestions, Emilia. A lot to absorb, and I will
                enjoy the sites you mentioned.

                One thing I had been going to mention to the group is that I live in a
                zone 2b-3a area where our winters can be long and severe. I do incorporate
                mulch when I can (summer/fall season and cover garden in mulch over winter),
                but find it more of a challenge with such a short growing season ie. soil
                doesn't warm in the spring if you have thick winter mulch, even if you can
                pull it aside in sections. So I am adapting a few different people's ideas,
                but open to suggestions. Anybody else here live in a colder area? I know the
                one site I visited (with gorgeous mulched gardens), mentioned a plan that
                would only work for winters averaging -10. Right now the thermometer is at
                -17C and that does not include the wind chill. Winters of -35 to -40C are
                common.
                Also, though my family supports what I do, they are not around to help due
                to work in town. So they asked that I confine my interests to things I can
                do without their help. SO my journey to a healthier property is going slowly
                doing what I can on my own :).

                You wrote>about the fields, the ones for pasture cannot be the same as the
                ones for grazing...try to organize the space considering the hay that u'll
                need for the long canadian winters.>

                I assume you mean hay and grazing pastures should be separate. We do have
                plenty of property - 50 extra acres we haven't figured out what to do with -
                so separating hay fields and pasture are not a problem. But, do you mind
                explaining why I should do this? With rotational grazing, hay fields are
                often grazed early for manuring and then a later winter crop taken off.
                Grazing all property is a vital part of rotational grazing for animal impact
                and fertilization. Personally, I haven't grazed my animals on the hay fields
                till just this fall when I had 2 that were going to the butcher, and I
                needed to keep them on grass. The butcher kept putting it off and off, and I
                was running out of green pasture, with only lush alfalfa left in October.
                But still, the alfalfa was 18 inches minimum, and I only let them skim it a
                couple of hours a day. Rotational grazers and books I have read, told me it
                is important to rotate the hay and pasture fields and give everything a
                chance to be grazed. What is your reason for keeping them separate?

                >electric fencing is the easiest way to do rotational grazing & Allan
                >Savory's "holistic resource management" a must book for animal husbundry as
                >it is Andr� Voisin's "soil, grass & cancer" book to understand the reasons
                >for the ill health of "captive" animals (u can order this from ACRES USA
                >(info@...)>

                I used electric fencing for grazing this year - finally got a relative to
                help me set it up - and also have Allan Savoury and Voisin's books. I try to
                read all my books over the winter to refresh myself and remind me of some of
                the practises I use - hard to keep everything in my head when I have too
                many interests (maybe I need to cut back:<).

                >u may contact the Permaculture Activist for getting the names of people in
                >canada involved with permaculture>

                Thank you very much for this link!!!! I do have Bill Mollison's
                Permaculture, but speaking to people who are practising his methods is very
                helpful!!

                We did not cut our alfalfa the first year, though most do or graze it. Glad
                to hear it is a good practise.
                >From the 2nd year & beyond: give as many cuttings BEFORE THE FLOWER BUDS
                >appear -as ur climate lets u- considering that u must allowd the plants to
                >have a full growth cycle of going to flower & set the seed BEFORE first
                >frosts >
                On an optimal year with lots of rain, one might get two cuttings before
                August 15th and hope it grows enough to not get root heaving or frost
                damage, but we never have. I am really pleased to hear that we have been
                doing something properly even though we didn't have any reason other than
                what we felt would be best for the longevity of the field. The last two
                years, we did one cutting in early July - but during early bloom - and left
                it to grow and at least half of it went to seed in September. The reason all
                of it was not able to go to seed was due to machinery break downs and delays
                in harvesting.
                As far as I understand though, you are saying we should cut BEFORE the
                flower heads even appear, which will optimize nutrients in the hay, and
                getting a smaller yield and less TDM? I am curious to know if we could get
                two cuttings and still have it go to seed, due to the fact that we would be
                cutting it even earlier than normal (before heads appear), but one could
                experiment with a small part of the field, so they didn't compromise the
                whole field. It is an interesting idea. Out of curiosity, I shall have to
                look in my books at the nutrient content of alfalfa before it starts to head
                out. It should be easier on our equipment also, as the alfalfa is less
                stemmy. Are there any good reading/books/websites on your method?
                Most around here cut alfalfa at 100% bloom to get more hay and end up with a
                lesser quality that is hard and stemmy. Only people feeding dairy cows go
                for the higher nutrients but less total hay. As we drove to church today, I
                noticed that everybody's hay fields are down to the dirt (1-2 inches high at
                most), and the cows are still grazing them. But their stands are lucky to
                last 2-3 years before needing re-vamping, and they are the ones telling me I
                am going to destroy my fields with lack of care!
                Do you apply any type of fertilizer to your hay fields - ie manure etc? If
                you are always taking away in the form of hay, does it not compromise the
                health of the field and lower nutrients? Do you do soil testing to determine
                the initial fertility of the field?
                Also, you mentioned
                "when u do the last cutting, having seeds in it, new plants have the
                possibility to start their life cycle so that u'll have a permanent field of
                multiage plants..."
                Are you actually cutting the alfalfa going to seed and letting it lie, or do
                you let it stand and fall over naturally? I figured running our mower over
                the 40 acres again to mulch the standing hay, would not be helping the soil
                in any way (just more compaction), so I let it stand and mulch naturally. It
                also catches more snow and the wind isn't able to blow it away - we get
                severe winds in the winter that blow snow and topsoil all over.

                >grains raising: for ur climate u may also try the Bonfils method: permanent
                >cereal field with no-till involved for cold climates.>

                This isn't a no-till with herbicide method is it? It is getting popular
                around here to go to no till, but the herbicides they use!!!!

                >fruit trees: starting them "on site" -at their final place- won't cost much
                >money & it's the (almost) only way to give to the trees their double root
                >system>

                Do you mean starting from seed? We usually buy year old trees from
                nurseries. Do trees transplanted only have a single root system - I admit to
                being sadly lacking when it comes to information on fruit trees.

                >animal power...a most efficient way to compact soils>

                I try to use animal power to haul hay etc, and think it is more beneficial -
                besides healthier for environment - than using a truck or tractor.
                I have a question for anybody who wants to comment. Our soil here is
                notoriously low in trace minerals, especially in selenium. Though I
                supplement with natural minerals, I have had a few problems with white
                muscle disease - selenium deficiency - and am not able to find any help on
                restoring the minerals to the soil naturally. Nobody I talk to has any
                advice or help, and says once the minerals are gone, they are gone for good
                unless you apply them in the form of chemicals. Also, nobody is familiar
                with restoring trace minerals, just nitrogen, phosphorus, etc. I am trying
                to grow some high selenium herbs for my animals, though I do not understand
                how selenium deficient soil can grow herbs that are higher in selenium -
                herbalists tell me it is possible though.
                Thanks again.
                Heather

                _________________________________________________________________
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              • Stephen Nasby
                Thanks for the welcome and suggestions, Emilia. A lot to absorb, and I will enjoy the sites you mentioned. One thing I had been going to mention to the group
                Message 7 of 27 , Nov 24, 2002
                • 0 Attachment
                  Thanks for the welcome and suggestions, Emilia. A lot to absorb, and I will
                  enjoy the sites you mentioned.

                  One thing I had been going to mention to the group is that I live in a
                  zone 2b-3a area where our winters can be long and severe. I do incorporate
                  mulch when I can (summer/fall season and cover garden in mulch over winter),
                  but find it more of a challenge with such a short growing season ie. soil
                  doesn't warm in the spring if you have thick winter mulch, even if you can
                  pull it aside in sections. So I am adapting a few different people's ideas,
                  but open to suggestions. Anybody else here live in a colder area? I know the
                  one site I visited (with gorgeous mulched gardens), mentioned a plan that
                  would only work for winters averaging -10. Right now the thermometer is at
                  -17C and that does not include the wind chill. Winters of -35 to -40C are
                  common.
                  Also, though my family supports what I do, they are not around to help due
                  to work in town. So they asked that I confine my interests to things I can
                  do without their help. SO my journey to a healthier property is going slowly
                  doing what I can on my own :).

                  You wrote>about the fields, the ones for pasture cannot be the same as the
                  ones for grazing...try to organize the space considering the hay that u'll
                  need for the long canadian winters.>

                  I assume you mean hay and grazing pastures should be separate. We do have
                  plenty of property - 50 extra acres we haven't figured out what to do with -
                  so separating hay fields and pasture are not a problem. But, do you mind
                  explaining why I should do this? With rotational grazing, hay fields are
                  often grazed early for manuring and then a later winter crop taken off.
                  Grazing all property is a vital part of rotational grazing for animal impact
                  and fertilization. Personally, I haven't grazed my animals on the hay fields
                  till just this fall when I had 2 that were going to the butcher, and I
                  needed to keep them on grass. The butcher kept putting it off and off, and I
                  was running out of green pasture, with only lush alfalfa left in October.
                  But still, the alfalfa was 18 inches minimum, and I only let them skim it a
                  couple of hours a day. Rotational grazers and books I have read, told me it
                  is important to rotate the hay and pasture fields and give everything a
                  chance to be grazed. What is your reason for keeping them separate?

                  >electric fencing is the easiest way to do rotational grazing & Allan
                  >Savory's "holistic resource management" a must book for animal husbundry as
                  >it is Andr� Voisin's "soil, grass & cancer" book to understand the reasons
                  >for the ill health of "captive" animals (u can order this from ACRES USA
                  >(info@...)>

                  I used electric fencing for grazing this year - finally got a relative to
                  help me set it up - and also have Allan Savoury and Voisin's books. I try to
                  read all my books over the winter to refresh myself and remind me of some of
                  the practises I use - hard to keep everything in my head when I have too
                  many interests (maybe I need to cut back:<).

                  >u may contact the Permaculture Activist for getting the names of people in
                  >canada involved with permaculture>

                  Thank you very much for this link!!!! I do have Bill Mollison's
                  Permaculture, but speaking to people who are practising his methods is very
                  helpful!!

                  We did not cut our alfalfa the first year, though most do or graze it. Glad
                  to hear it is a good practise.
                  >From the 2nd year & beyond: give as many cuttings BEFORE THE FLOWER BUDS
                  >appear -as ur climate lets u- considering that u must allowd the plants to
                  >have a full growth cycle of going to flower & set the seed BEFORE first
                  >frosts >
                  On an optimal year with lots of rain, one might get two cuttings before
                  August 15th and hope it grows enough to not get root heaving or frost
                  damage, but we never have. I am really pleased to hear that we have been
                  doing something properly even though we didn't have any reason other than
                  what we felt would be best for the longevity of the field. The last two
                  years, we did one cutting in early July - but during early bloom - and left
                  it to grow and at least half of it went to seed in September. The reason all
                  of it was not able to go to seed was due to machinery break downs and delays
                  in harvesting.
                  As far as I understand though, you are saying we should cut BEFORE the
                  flower heads even appear, which will optimize nutrients in the hay, and
                  getting a smaller yield and less TDM? I am curious to know if we could get
                  two cuttings and still have it go to seed, due to the fact that we would be
                  cutting it even earlier than normal (before heads appear), but one could
                  experiment with a small part of the field, so they didn't compromise the
                  whole field. It is an interesting idea. Out of curiosity, I shall have to
                  look in my books at the nutrient content of alfalfa before it starts to head
                  out. It should be easier on our equipment also, as the alfalfa is less
                  stemmy. Are there any good reading/books/websites on your method?
                  Most around here cut alfalfa at 100% bloom to get more hay and end up with a
                  lesser quality that is hard and stemmy. Only people feeding dairy cows go
                  for the higher nutrients but less total hay. As we drove to church today, I
                  noticed that everybody's hay fields are down to the dirt (1-2 inches high at
                  most), and the cows are still grazing them. But their stands are lucky to
                  last 2-3 years before needing re-vamping, and they are the ones telling me I
                  am going to destroy my fields with lack of care!
                  Do you apply any type of fertilizer to your hay fields - ie manure etc? If
                  you are always taking away in the form of hay, does it not compromise the
                  health of the field and lower nutrients? Do you do soil testing to determine
                  the initial fertility of the field?
                  Also, you mentioned
                  "when u do the last cutting, having seeds in it, new plants have the
                  possibility to start their life cycle so that u'll have a permanent field of
                  multiage plants..."
                  Are you actually cutting the alfalfa going to seed and letting it lie, or do
                  you let it stand and fall over naturally? I figured running our mower over
                  the 40 acres again to mulch the standing hay, would not be helping the soil
                  in any way (just more compaction), so I let it stand and mulch naturally. It
                  also catches more snow and the wind isn't able to blow it away - we get
                  severe winds in the winter that blow snow and topsoil all over.

                  >grains raising: for ur climate u may also try the Bonfils method: permanent
                  >cereal field with no-till involved for cold climates.>

                  This isn't a no-till with herbicide method is it? It is getting popular
                  around here to go to no till, but the herbicides they use!!!!

                  >fruit trees: starting them "on site" -at their final place- won't cost much
                  >money & it's the (almost) only way to give to the trees their double root
                  >system>

                  Do you mean starting from seed? We usually buy year old trees from
                  nurseries. Do trees transplanted only have a single root system - I admit to
                  being sadly lacking when it comes to information on fruit trees.

                  >animal power...a most efficient way to compact soils>

                  I try to use animal power to haul hay etc, and think it is more beneficial -
                  besides healthier for environment - than using a truck or tractor.
                  I have a question for anybody who wants to comment. Our soil here is
                  notoriously low in trace minerals, especially in selenium. Though I
                  supplement with natural minerals, I have had a few problems with white
                  muscle disease - selenium deficiency - and am not able to find any help on
                  restoring the minerals to the soil naturally. Nobody I talk to has any
                  advice or help, and says once the minerals are gone, they are gone for good
                  unless you apply them in the form of chemicals. Also, nobody is familiar
                  with restoring trace minerals, just nitrogen, phosphorus, etc. I am trying
                  to grow some high selenium herbs for my animals, though I do not understand
                  how selenium deficient soil can grow herbs that are higher in selenium -
                  herbalists tell me it is possible though.
                  Thanks again.
                  Heather

                  _________________________________________________________________
                  Add photos to your messages with MSN 8. Get 2 months FREE*.
                  http://join.msn.com/?page=features/featuredemail
                • tiakd14477
                  First, apologies for the double post. I must have clicked send twice. I do have a couple of wendell Berry s books, plus others he recommends. Just finding the
                  Message 8 of 27 , Nov 24, 2002
                  • 0 Attachment
                    First, apologies for the double post. I must have clicked send twice.
                    I do have a couple of wendell Berry's books, plus others he
                    recommends. Just finding the time to read everything. . .
                    Thanks for bringing up the Johnson grass - it is good to be sure
                    people are researching and not taking anything lightly.
                    Actually, due to our cold winters and far from tropical summers *G*,
                    Johnson grass is not the pest it is down south. People do use Johnson
                    Grass and Quack grass here meaning the same thing (which they
                    aren't), but both are only pests in cultivated land, and in fact, I
                    have wondered if Johnson grass is really found here - I have seen one
                    or two clumps in our field, but the grass specialist was no help.
                    They just said it could be found here. I wonder if it is, as anything
                    I have read on it, refers to warmer sub tropical climates, and I've
                    only read about it in mid and southern states.
                    Our observation in returning Round Up sprayed or cultivated shelter
                    belts back to grass, is that the quack grass and limited amounts of
                    johnson grass fill the soil in very quickly - nature's way of
                    covering tilled soil as fast as possible. But within a year or two,
                    the grass has been completly replaced with native grasses or other
                    grasses, and you will never find it ( or thistles) in a pasture
                    around here, only gardens and open cultivated fields.
                    It was the same way with Russian olive trees. We planted them around
                    our garden for a shelterbelt. They were nice except for the
                    horrendous spikes. Friends from a moderate climate were horrified as
                    their province is trying to eliminate this pest. Mom ripped them out
                    after a long discussion with them, and then I went onto the internet
                    and found out that Russian olive is a short lived tree here due to
                    our winters - 20 years tops. It does not cause the seed and spreading
                    problems here either. So, it may have been good to get rid of because
                    of it's short life, but it wasn't necessary from a "you've introduced
                    a pest to your property!" viewpoint :).
                    People are fanatics about spraying for quack grass here, when I
                    actually like it because it is an extremely beneficial grass for
                    animals. They seek it out on the edges of our gardens in spring and
                    fall (when they do dandelions), and it is a good cleanser. I know of
                    somebody who grows fields of it for his horses.

                    <Take the best and leave the rest.>

                    True, and this is why I don't follow just one method - ie Ruth Stout,
                    Eliot Coleman, Wendell Berry, Allan Savoury, Voisin, Bill Murphy,
                    Bill Mollison etc. I have found this to be especially true in our
                    climate and growing season, as most information is not geared for it.
                    So I take what I can, appreciate the rest, and then adapt it to our
                    climate and growing season. It takes a while to experiment, but makes
                    life interesting.
                    Thanks
                    Regards
                    Heather
                  • Karri Varpio
                    ... Can you tell what this zone means geographically? It sounds like continental climate. ... What ideas/methods do you use? I live in Finland, probably
                    Message 9 of 27 , Nov 28, 2002
                    • 0 Attachment
                      >
                      > One thing I had been going to mention to the group is that I
                      > live in a
                      > zone 2b-3a area where our winters can be long and severe.

                      Can you tell what this zone means geographically? It sounds like continental
                      climate.

                      > I do incorporate
                      > mulch when I can (summer/fall season and cover garden in mulch
                      > over winter),
                      > but find it more of a challenge with such a short growing season ie. soil
                      > doesn't warm in the spring if you have thick winter mulch, even
                      > if you can
                      > pull it aside in sections. So I am adapting a few different
                      > people's ideas,
                      > but open to suggestions. Anybody else here live in a colder area?

                      What ideas/methods do you use? I live in Finland, probably norther than you,
                      and we also have cold winters and short growing season (without Golf stream
                      we wouldn't be growing anything here).

                      > I know the
                      > one site I visited (with gorgeous mulched gardens), mentioned a plan that
                      > would only work for winters averaging -10.

                      As I am growing organic vegetables (+some grain), it would be interesting to
                      hear about their plan. We grow both vegetables and grain in 'conventional'
                      organic way, with few experiments with permanent mulched beds etc. (I should
                      write more about it later, if anybody is interested to know how not to do
                      it.)

                      > I assume you mean hay and grazing pastures should be separate. We do have
                      > plenty of property - 50 extra acres we haven't figured out what
                      > to do with -
                      > so separating hay fields and pasture are not a problem. But, do you mind
                      > explaining why I should do this? With rotational grazing, hay fields are
                      > often grazed early for manuring and then a later winter crop taken off.
                      > Grazing all property is a vital part of rotational grazing for
                      > animal impact
                      > and fertilization.

                      Practices may be somewhat different here. Pasture here is usually closer to
                      cow-shed, because fields are small and almost in the middle of woods, so
                      it's not practical to take animals to remote fields. When animals are inside
                      most of the year, there is much manure to spread every spring to fertilize
                      hay and other crops.
                      You probably have different situation, so these are not much of a reason not
                      to make hay and pasture in same fields. But you have less fences to make
                      with permanent pastures.


                      > This isn't a no-till with herbicide method is it? It is getting popular
                      > around here to go to no till, but the herbicides they use!!!!

                      No. It's basically winter wheat grown on permanent white clover. Wheat is
                      sown around mid-summer by scattering the seeds. I don't know how it really
                      works. My experience is that clover gows so strongly that I think it would
                      suppress wheat seedlings, but I haven't tried it. Maybe wheat growing above
                      clover keeps it from being too strong?
                      Then, some time after harvest, one could cut the clover and wheat seedlings.
                      At least some white clovers go to flower after cutting, so wheat seedlings
                      might get a chance, if there is enough time before frost/snow. There is
                      though a risk that cut clover mulch causes fungal diseases to kill wheat
                      under snow.



                      > I have a question for anybody who wants to comment. Our soil here is
                      > notoriously low in trace minerals, especially in selenium. Though I
                      > supplement with natural minerals, I have had a few problems with white
                      > muscle disease - selenium deficiency - and am not able to find
                      > any help on
                      > restoring the minerals to the soil naturally. Nobody I talk to has any
                      > advice or help, and says once the minerals are gone, they are
                      > gone for good
                      > unless you apply them in the form of chemicals.

                      Low selenium is a common problem in finnish soils soils, too. Conventional
                      solution is that it is added to fertilizers. So organic grains are always
                      much lower in selenium, and it really could be a problem for strictly
                      vegetarians, if they would use only organic products.
                      I wonder how they managed before fertilizers. I suppose one solutions was
                      that cows and other animals grazed in the woods and they were also given
                      dried leaves and branches of alnus and other broad-leaved trees in the
                      wintertime. I guess wood, berries, mushrooms etc. have more selenium, maybe
                      because they are growing in stable soil systems with mycorrhizas etc., even
                      though Se levels in soil were low. I don't know if it would be possible that
                      in no-tilled fields with clover and other perennial plants soil
                      micro-organisms could build the fertility to such a level that it would
                      compare to woods?
                      Anyway I haven't heard of any sustainable way to add selenium to the soil.
                      This may be one thing where one cannot follow strictly Fukuoka's methods.

                      Karri

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                    • Larry Haftl
                      ... (I should ... not to do ... Hello Karri, I am very interested in knowing how not to do it . I plan on making some permanent beds in the spring and would
                      Message 10 of 27 , Nov 29, 2002
                      • 0 Attachment
                        At Thursday, 28 November 2002, Karri Varpio wrote:

                        >hear about their plan. We grow both vegetables and grain in 'conventional'
                        >organic way, with few experiments with permanent mulched beds etc.
                        (I should
                        >write more about it later, if anybody is interested to know how
                        not to do
                        >it.)

                        Hello Karri,

                        I am very interested in knowing "how not to do it". I plan on making
                        some permanent beds in the spring and would like to know what not
                        to do. I have heard there are some problems with permanent mulched
                        beds, but I can never get the details. Anything you could add would
                        be very helpful.
                        People talk about their successes, but rarely about their failures,
                        and I'd prefer to learn as much as possible from other people's
                        problems since I already have enough of my own to learn from.


                        >works. My experience is that clover gows so strongly that I think
                        it would
                        >suppress wheat seedlings, but I haven't tried it. Maybe wheat growing
                        above
                        >clover keeps it from being too strong?

                        From what I see happening here, the white clover isn't very effective
                        at suppressing weeds and grasses. It's spreading nicely and filling
                        in the few bare patches I had, but the grasses and weeds are still
                        able to push up through it. I suspect wheat would have no problem
                        doing this also, but I don't know from experience.

                        >> I have a question for anybody who wants to comment. Our soil
                        here is
                        >> notoriously low in trace minerals, especially in selenium. Though I
                        >> supplement with natural minerals, I have had a few problems with
                        white
                        >> muscle disease - selenium deficiency - and am not able to find
                        >> any help on
                        >> restoring the minerals to the soil naturally. Nobody I talk to
                        has any
                        >> advice or help, and says once the minerals are gone, they are
                        >> gone for good
                        >> unless you apply them in the form of chemicals.
                        >
                        >Low selenium is a common problem in finnish soils soils, too. Conventional
                        >solution is that it is added to fertilizers. So organic grains are
                        always
                        >much lower in selenium, and it really could be a problem for strictly
                        >vegetarians, if they would use only organic products.
                        >I wonder how they managed before fertilizers. I suppose one solutions
                        was
                        >that cows and other animals grazed in the woods and they were also
                        given
                        >dried leaves and branches of alnus and other broad-leaved trees in the
                        >wintertime. I guess wood, berries, mushrooms etc. have more selenium,
                        maybe
                        >because they are growing in stable soil systems with mycorrhizas
                        etc., even
                        >though Se levels in soil were low. I don't know if it would be possible
                        that
                        >in no-tilled fields with clover and other perennial plants soil
                        >micro-organisms could build the fertility to such a level that it would
                        >compare to woods?
                        >Anyway I haven't heard of any sustainable way to add selenium to
                        the soil.
                        >This may be one thing where one cannot follow strictly Fukuoka's
                        methods.

                        I came across selenium in my research and it is quite amazing. Too
                        much is toxic and too little is almost as bad. The amounts either
                        way were very small -- something like 3 grams/kilogram is good and
                        more than 9 grams/kilogram starts to become toxic.

                        It comes from seleneous rocks -- volcanic or sedimentary from volcanics.
                        Natural occurrance has never been reported at toxic levels. It's
                        only when concentrated by irrigation water that it becomes a problem.
                        The San Joaquin Valley in Central California has a problem with
                        this from past irrigation practices. If your soil is deficient in
                        selenium you could change that by adding some seleneous rock in powder
                        form. This, to me, doesn't seem to conflict with Fukuoka. If the
                        mineral is not present in the first place, then it seems reasonable
                        to add it in a "natural" way and form. BTW, are you still sure your
                        soil is selenium deficient? one of the articles I read about Chernobyl
                        said the fallout was spreading selenium to areas that were otherwise
                        deficient in it. Didn't say which soils.

                        Since some plants such as corn, onions, garlic and the brassica family
                        can absorb a lot of selenium if it is present, mulching with the
                        residue from these plants should keep it in the soil once you get
                        it there.

                        The most peculiar thing I remeber from reading about selenium is
                        that it demonstrates the problem with "eating locally" if you live
                        in a mineral-deficient area. Most people get around selenium deficiency
                        in local soils by eating food from other areas that aren't.

                        Larry Haftl
                        larry@...
                        http://FukuokaNaturalFarming.org
                      • Beatrice Gilboa
                        ... suppress wheat seedlings, but I haven t tried it. Maybe wheat growing above clover keeps it from being too strong? ... From what I see happening here, the
                        Message 11 of 27 , Nov 29, 2002
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                          At Thursday, 28 November 2002, Karri Varpio wrote:

                          >> My experience is that clover gows so strongly that I think it would
                          suppress wheat seedlings, but I haven't tried it. Maybe wheat growing
                          above clover keeps it from being too strong?

                          > November 2002 Larry Haftl answers29
                          From what I see happening here, the white clover isn't very effective
                          at suppressing weeds and grasses. It's spreading nicely and filling
                          in the few bare patches I had, but the grasses and weeds are still
                          able to push up through it. I suspect wheat would have no problem
                          doing this also, but I don't know from experience.


                          - I experienced the two cases: clover (not white) that was very strong and
                          taking a bit too much space relatively to other plants growing among it (but
                          I've never tried wheat) in a very sandy soil on small french Island
                          (brittanny)
                          And white clover in a very heavy soil ( french Alpes near Swisserland) which
                          allowed with no-problem other plants to grow along with it.

                          Beatrice
                          Israel
                        • Larry Haftl
                          Hello Beatrice, ... strong and ... it (but ... which ... I believe you. I ve been reading about clovers for the last couple of days trying to figure out what
                          Message 12 of 27 , Nov 29, 2002
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                            Hello Beatrice,

                            >- I experienced the two cases: clover (not white) that was very
                            strong and
                            >taking a bit too much space relatively to other plants growing among
                            it (but
                            >I've never tried wheat) in a very sandy soil on small french Island
                            >(brittanny)
                            >And white clover in a very heavy soil ( french Alpes near Swisserland)
                            which
                            >allowed with no-problem other plants to grow along with it.

                            I believe you. I've been reading about clovers for the last couple
                            of days trying to figure out what to use where next year. The more
                            I read the more confused I got. The best single source for useful
                            information turned out to be the Territorial Seed Company's catalog.
                            Helped me make more sense out of the whole matter.

                            For those of you who might be interested in this I'll quote what
                            they said:

                            BERSEEM CLOVER
                            (OP) Trifolium hybtidum One of the best nitrogen fixers, making 200-
                            300 pounds per acre available. Extremely productive, it is an excellent
                            forage as well as a green manure. An annual, Berseem will tolerate
                            a wide range of soils, and temperatures down to 15°F.

                            NEW ZEALAND WHITE CLOVER
                            (OP) Trifolium repens Growing to only 8 inches, this low clover has
                            a growth habit similar to White Dutch Clover but will stand drought
                            conditions better, is more vigorous, and tolerates a wide range of
                            soils. Used for both a spring and fall cover crop, New Zealand White
                            Clover can be sown between row plandngs or as a solid seeded cover.
                            A terrific green manure as it fixes up to 170 pounds of nitrogen
                            per acre and attracts beneficial insects.

                            MAMMOTH RED CLOVER
                            (OP) Trifolium pratense var. sativum This biennial legume is an excellent
                            fast- growing cover crop which can be planted almost any time of
                            the year. More vigorous and tolerant of acid soils than other clovers,
                            Mammoth Red breaks up clay soils and can add as much as 200 pounds
                            of nitrogen per acre. Reaching up to 3 feet in height at maturity,
                            Mammoth Red clover can provide enormous amounts of organic matter
                            and tilth to your soil

                            CRIMSON CLOVER
                            (OP) Trifolium incarnatum A reliably winter-hardy annual variety
                            which does not multiply with runners (like perennial Red Clover)
                            and is easy to eliminate by tillage. When planted September through
                            October, Crimson Clover will form a dense green carpet by mid-winter,
                            fixing 125 pounds of nitrogen per acre and producing tons of humus.
                            Does not perform well in waterlogged or acid soils. Matures in June
                            with crimson flowers on 18 inch plants. Shade tolerant and a great
                            summer beneficial insect attractant.

                            SUBTERRANEAN CLOVER
                            (OP) Trifolium subterraneum Sub Clover makes a great legume for undersowing
                            with taller crops as it has excellent shade tolerance. Getting its
                            name from its habit of burrowing the seedheads in the soil, Sub Clover
                            is an ideal cover crop in dryland orchards, vineyards, or for corn.
                            Preferring an acid to a neutral soil, it will perform relatively
                            well under low fertility conditions. A Mediterranean native, it's
                            well suited to a dry, warm climate with mild winters.

                            Such a wide range of growth habits for "clover"...

                            Still haven't found a comparable description or source for Ladino
                            clover (one of Fukuoka's favorites), but then I probably haven't
                            looked hard enough. Maybe I should try the links on the Fukuoka Farming
                            Website :)


                            Larry Haftl
                            larry@...
                            http://FukuokaNaturalFarming.org
                          • Beatrice Gilboa
                            Thanks, Larry, The result of your research is very interesting to me. Beatrice Israël
                            Message 13 of 27 , Nov 30, 2002
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                              Thanks, Larry,
                              The result of your research is very interesting to me.
                              Beatrice

                              Israël
                            • tiakd 14477
                              Can you tell what this zone means geographically? It sounds like continental climate. We live in Saskatchewan, canada. Our last frost is approximately first
                              Message 14 of 27 , Dec 2, 2002
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                                Can you tell what this zone means geographically? It sounds like continental
                                climate.>
                                We live in Saskatchewan, canada. Our last frost is approximately first of
                                June, and we get our first frost in september. We live in a dry area which
                                receives approximately 17 inches of moisture. We have severe cold winters
                                and hot short summers. Any other questions, ask away.

                                >What ideas/methods do you use? >
                                Right now we have semi-raised beds (raised because I just walk on paths and
                                usually put the soil from the paths on top of the beds), mulch rows and
                                around veggies with grass clippings, straw, hay and garden scraps.
                                I don't use heavy mulch over the winter, but cover paths after planting, and
                                surround veggies with mulch around the middle of June when they get a head
                                start and the air is consistently warmer.

                                <We grow both vegetables and grain in 'conventional'organic way, with few
                                experiments with permanent mulched beds etc. (I should write more about it
                                later, if anybody is interested to know how not to do it.)>
                                I would like to hear more about the mistakes you have made. i know how many
                                i have made myself!

                                Regards
                                Heather

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                              • tiakd 14477
                                BTW, are you still sure your soil is selenium deficient? Yes, I know it is from the health problems I have had with the animals - white muscle disease. ...
                                Message 15 of 27 , Dec 2, 2002
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                                  BTW, are you still sure your soil is selenium deficient?>>

                                  Yes, I know it is from the health problems I have had with the animals -
                                  white muscle disease.

                                  >The most peculiar thing I remeber from reading about selenium is
                                  >that it demonstrates the problem with "eating locally" if you live
                                  >in a mineral-deficient area. Most people get around selenium deficiency
                                  >in local soils by eating food from other areas that aren't.

                                  Which would explain why my animals were having the problem as they graze on
                                  our pasture in summer and eat the hay in winter. This year I started using
                                  kelp completely as the mineral, so I will see if that eliminates the
                                  problems or at least lessens them.
                                  Regards
                                  heather

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                                • reso47yd <reso47yd@yahoo.com>
                                  A zen buddhist in the redwoods of Northern Ca. It s raining cats and dogs. What are rest of you doing
                                  Message 16 of 27 , Dec 14, 2002
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                                    A zen buddhist in the redwoods of Northern Ca. It's raining cats and
                                    dogs. What are rest of you doing
                                  • nogilahnep
                                    hi, my name is Eitan,i´m from argentina. i want to know how can i go to visit the masanobu fukuoka´s farm. I´m reading one straw revolution and to me it
                                    Message 17 of 27 , Jan 22, 2007
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                                      hi, my name is Eitan,i´m from argentina. i want to know how can i go
                                      to visit the masanobu fukuoka´s farm. I´m reading one straw revolution
                                      and to me it would be realy important if i could go to japan and visit
                                      and work in the farm. Please send me any information, i would thank
                                      you whit my heart (sorry if my english is not so good). Paz, Eitan.
                                    • Bart
                                      Hi Eitan, I think Masanobu Fukuoka died, and who knows what happened or is happening with his farm. But there are other places where you can learn a lot about
                                      Message 18 of 27 , Jan 24, 2007
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                                        Hi Eitan,

                                        I think Masanobu Fukuoka died, and who knows what happened or is
                                        happening with his farm. But there are other places where you can
                                        learn a lot about natural farming... - our own farm in a few years in
                                        Mexico maybe ;)
                                        Meanwhile you can have a look in the "links" section of this group,
                                        and don't forget to check out the "Natural Farming and Zen" post
                                        earlier...

                                        saludos,
                                        Bart
                                      • leafhaskell
                                        Eitan, I, too, am living in Arg. and am planning on visiting Japan this year. Did you have any luck locating the Fukuoka farm?
                                        Message 19 of 27 , Apr 2, 2007
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                                          Eitan,
                                          I, too, am living in Arg. and am planning on visiting Japan this year.
                                          Did you have any luck locating the Fukuoka farm?

                                          --- In fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com, "nogilahnep" <nogilahnep@...>
                                          wrote:
                                          >
                                          > hi, my name is Eitan,i´m from argentina. i want to know how can i go
                                          > to visit the masanobu fukuoka´s farm. I´m reading one straw revolution
                                          > and to me it would be realy important if i could go to japan and visit
                                          > and work in the farm. Please send me any information, i would thank
                                          > you whit my heart (sorry if my english is not so good). Paz, Eitan.
                                          >
                                        • Carlos Enrique Kaiser Winkler
                                          Saludos to my Andes neighbors Eitan, leafhaskell : If it might be of interest to you: Here is the adress of the best NF according to M.Fukuoka. The farm
                                          Message 20 of 27 , Apr 4, 2007
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                                            Saludos to my Andes neighbors Eitan, "leafhaskell" : If it might be of
                                            interest to you: Here is the adress of the best NF according to M.Fukuoka.
                                            The farm is called Kalpavruksha. The owner :Bhaskar Save Adress: Village
                                            Dehri,via Umergam. Dist.Valsad, Gujarad 396170.India. Open to visitors
                                            each Satturday from 14.00 to 16.00 hrs. This farm is in the center west
                                            coast of India.
                                            .. I am travelling there, starting from B.Aires, next week. Mis saludos
                                            Carlos

                                            >From: "leafhaskell" <leafhaskell@...>
                                            >Reply-To: fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com
                                            >To: fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com
                                            >Subject: [fukuoka_farming] Re: new member
                                            >Date: Mon, 02 Apr 2007 12:25:44 -0000
                                            >
                                            >Eitan,
                                            >I, too, am living in Arg. and am planning on visiting Japan this year.
                                            >Did you have any luck locating the Fukuoka farm?
                                            >
                                            >--- In fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com, "nogilahnep" <nogilahnep@...>
                                            >wrote:
                                            > >
                                            > > hi, my name is Eitan,i´m from argentina. i want to know how can i go
                                            > > to visit the masanobu fukuoka´s farm. I´m reading one straw revolution
                                            > > and to me it would be realy important if i could go to japan and visit
                                            > > and work in the farm. Please send me any information, i would thank
                                            > > you whit my heart (sorry if my english is not so good). Paz, Eitan.
                                            > >
                                            >
                                            >

                                            _________________________________________________________________
                                            MSN Amor: busca tu ½ naranja http://latam.msn.com/amor/
                                          • Michael Meredith
                                            Hello, I am a researcher getting into plant research after a long haitus. I am studying azomite, charcoal, sonic bloom, and weed farming. How about you?
                                            Message 21 of 27 , Dec 30, 2008
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                                              Hello, I am a researcher getting into plant research after a long haitus.
                                              I am studying azomite, charcoal, sonic bloom, and weed farming.
                                              How about you?
                                              Michael


                                              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                            • robin
                                              ha ha! many of us are into weed farming, also! weeds as in legal ones, that is. is that what you mean?***robin ... haitus.
                                              Message 22 of 27 , Dec 31, 2008
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                                                ha ha! many of us are into weed farming, also! weeds as in legal ones,
                                                that is. is that what you mean?***robin

                                                Michael Meredith <meredith848@...> wrote:
                                                >
                                                > Hello, I am a researcher getting into plant research after a long
                                                haitus.
                                                > I am studying azomite, charcoal, sonic bloom, and weed farming.
                                                > How about you?
                                                > Michael
                                                >
                                                >
                                                >
                                              • Dieter Brand
                                                Michael, Welcome to the group. Weed farming sounds consistent with Natural Farming. Tell us more about it. Dieter
                                                Message 23 of 27 , Dec 31, 2008
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                                                  Michael,

                                                  Welcome to the group. "Weed farming" sounds consistent with Natural
                                                  Farming. Tell us more about it.

                                                  Dieter

                                                  On 12/31/08, robin <witchessocks@...> wrote:
                                                  > ha ha! many of us are into weed farming, also! weeds as in legal ones,
                                                  > that is. is that what you mean?***robin
                                                  >
                                                  > Michael Meredith <meredith848@...> wrote:
                                                  >>
                                                  >> Hello, I am a researcher getting into plant research after a long
                                                  > haitus.
                                                  >> I am studying azomite, charcoal, sonic bloom, and weed farming.
                                                  >> How about you?
                                                  >> Michael
                                                  >>
                                                  >>
                                                  >>
                                                  >
                                                  >
                                                  >
                                                • Michael Meredith
                                                  I stomp the weeds down, weigh the bushes down with corn stalks, and the melons can grow on top of that. The roots prevent erosion, animal habitat is not lost,
                                                  Message 24 of 27 , Dec 31, 2008
                                                  • 0 Attachment
                                                    I stomp the weeds down, weigh the bushes down with corn stalks, and the melons can grow on top of that. The roots prevent erosion, animal habitat is not lost, I save time. I have an undeveloped garden area.
                                                    Michael




                                                    ________________________________
                                                    From: Dieter Brand <brand.dieter@...>
                                                    To: fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com
                                                    Sent: Wednesday, December 31, 2008 3:51:36 AM
                                                    Subject: Re: [fukuoka_farming] Re: new member


                                                    Michael,

                                                    Welcome to the group. "Weed farming" sounds consistent with Natural
                                                    Farming. Tell us more about it.

                                                    Dieter

                                                    On 12/31/08, robin <witchessocks@ yahoo.com> wrote:
                                                    > ha ha! many of us are into weed farming, also! weeds as in legal ones,
                                                    > that is. is that what you mean?***robin
                                                    >
                                                    > Michael Meredith <meredith848@ ...> wrote:
                                                    >>
                                                    >> Hello, I am a researcher getting into plant research after a long
                                                    > haitus.
                                                    >> I am studying azomite, charcoal, sonic bloom, and weed farming.
                                                    >> How about you?
                                                    >> Michael
                                                    >>
                                                    >>
                                                    >>
                                                    >
                                                    >
                                                    >


                                                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                                  • Dieter Brand
                                                    Michael, That sounds a lot like mulched gardening , which is of course fine in its own right. I imagined something like sod culture when you talked about
                                                    Message 25 of 27 , Dec 31, 2008
                                                    • 0 Attachment
                                                      Michael,

                                                      That sounds a lot like "mulched gardening", which is of course fine in
                                                      its own right. I imagined something like "sod culture" when you
                                                      talked about "weed farming". Sod culture is nothing new in orchards
                                                      but can present a challenge in vegetable cultivation.

                                                      Dieter


                                                      On 12/31/08, Michael Meredith <meredith848@...> wrote:
                                                      > I stomp the weeds down, weigh the bushes down with corn stalks, and the
                                                      > melons can grow on top of that. The roots prevent erosion, animal habitat is
                                                      > not lost, I save time. I have an undeveloped garden area.
                                                      > Michael
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      > ________________________________
                                                      > From: Dieter Brand <brand.dieter@...>
                                                      > To: fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com
                                                      > Sent: Wednesday, December 31, 2008 3:51:36 AM
                                                      > Subject: Re: [fukuoka_farming] Re: new member
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      > Michael,
                                                      >
                                                      > Welcome to the group. "Weed farming" sounds consistent with Natural
                                                      > Farming. Tell us more about it.
                                                      >
                                                      > Dieter
                                                      >
                                                      > On 12/31/08, robin <witchessocks@ yahoo.com> wrote:
                                                      >> ha ha! many of us are into weed farming, also! weeds as in legal ones,
                                                      >> that is. is that what you mean?***robin
                                                      >>
                                                      >> Michael Meredith <meredith848@ ...> wrote:
                                                      >>>
                                                      >>> Hello, I am a researcher getting into plant research after a long
                                                      >> haitus.
                                                      >>> I am studying azomite, charcoal, sonic bloom, and weed farming.
                                                      >>> How about you?
                                                      >>> Michael
                                                      >>>
                                                      >>>
                                                      >>>
                                                      >>
                                                      >>
                                                      >>
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                                      >
                                                      >
                                                    • Michael Meredith
                                                      Its a cross between the two, adapted to local weeds. I m also planting squash, beans, and corn together(the three sisters), evidently grown in all the
                                                      Message 26 of 27 , Dec 31, 2008
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                                                        Its a cross between the two, adapted to local weeds.
                                                        I'm also planting squash, beans, and corn together(the three sisters),
                                                        evidently grown in all the americas, including Chile.
                                                        Michael




                                                        ________________________________
                                                        From: Dieter Brand <brand.dieter@...>
                                                        To: fukuoka_farming@yahoogroups.com
                                                        Sent: Wednesday, December 31, 2008 7:33:08 PM
                                                        Subject: Re: [fukuoka_farming] Re: new member


                                                        Michael,

                                                        That sounds a lot like "mulched gardening", which is of course fine in
                                                        its own right. I imagined something like "sod culture" when you
                                                        talked about "weed farming". Sod culture is nothing new in orchards
                                                        but can present a challenge in vegetable cultivation.

                                                        Dieter

                                                        On 12/31/08, Michael Meredith <meredith848@ yahoo.com> wrote:
                                                        > I stomp the weeds down, weigh the bushes down with corn stalks, and the
                                                        > melons can grow on top of that. The roots prevent erosion, animal habitat is
                                                        > not lost, I save time. I have an undeveloped garden area.
                                                        > Michael
                                                        >
                                                        >
                                                        >
                                                        >
                                                        > ____________ _________ _________ __
                                                        > From: Dieter Brand <brand.dieter@ gmail.com>
                                                        > To: fukuoka_farming@ yahoogroups. com
                                                        > Sent: Wednesday, December 31, 2008 3:51:36 AM
                                                        > Subject: Re: [fukuoka_farming] Re: new member
                                                        >
                                                        >
                                                        > Michael,
                                                        >
                                                        > Welcome to the group. "Weed farming" sounds consistent with Natural
                                                        > Farming. Tell us more about it.
                                                        >
                                                        > Dieter
                                                        >
                                                        > On 12/31/08, robin <witchessocks@ yahoo.com> wrote:
                                                        >> ha ha! many of us are into weed farming, also! weeds as in legal ones,
                                                        >> that is. is that what you mean?***robin
                                                        >>
                                                        >> Michael Meredith <meredith848@ ...> wrote:
                                                        >>>
                                                        >>> Hello, I am a researcher getting into plant research after a long
                                                        >> haitus.
                                                        >>> I am studying azomite, charcoal, sonic bloom, and weed farming.
                                                        >>> How about you?
                                                        >>> Michael
                                                        >>>
                                                        >>>
                                                        >>>
                                                        >>
                                                        >>
                                                        >>
                                                        >
                                                        >
                                                        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                                        >
                                                        >


                                                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                                      • drey_lim
                                                        Hello to all, Let me introduced myself, my name is Andry Lim and I came from Davao City Philippines. Our farming technique refers to the Korean natural farming
                                                        Message 27 of 27 , Mar 1, 2009
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                                                          Hello to all,

                                                          Let me introduced myself, my name is Andry Lim and I came from Davao
                                                          City Philippines. Our farming technique refers to the Korean natural
                                                          farming using indigenous microorganism and enzymes this we applied and
                                                          adopted for the production of farmstead produced farm inputs to plants
                                                          and animals. We find it appropriate to teach the technology to
                                                          Filipino farmers and can be duplicated by small scale farmers to
                                                          medium scale production units and it has proven very effective. It's
                                                          concept is integrated to livestock and aquaculture. We teach farmer to
                                                          plant leguminous trees (fodder) as food for pigs, goats, chicken and
                                                          fish to sustain one single farm operation.
                                                          My intention in joining the group is to learn more about fukuoka
                                                          technology from the expert within the group and if given a chance,
                                                          exchanged and share the same passion for natural farming our practice,
                                                          success story in the Philippines by Filipino farmers who embraces the
                                                          technology of zero chemical and zero tillage and it’s love for nature.
                                                          Our earth is screaming for help!

                                                          Andry K Lim
                                                          Davao City Philippines
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