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Re: Composting

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  • jonathantellerelsberg
    ... eventually, also. ... As I understand it, though rocks will weather into sand, silt, and clay, these particles don t become SOIL proper until they are
    Message 1 of 54 , Apr 1, 2011
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      First, a response to Gail, who said:

      --- In pfaf@yahoogroups.com, Gail Lloyd <gardenchick1949@...> wrote:
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      > Well said :) We might add that the rocks break down into soil eventually, also.
      > Gail

      As I understand it, though rocks will weather into sand, silt, and clay, these particles don't become SOIL proper until they are acted upon and mixed with organic residues, all of which are the result of ongoing and past living metabolisms.

      On the topic of compost and vegan agriculture, it sounds like there's a fair bit of fundamentalist perspectives from both sides of the issue. Considering the evidence, it seems pretty clear to me that excellent compost can be made from straight manure, from a mix of manure and uneaten organic materials, and from exclusively uneaten organic materials (a fancy way of saying totally without manure). That technically the process of converting these materials into compost entails their being consumed and pooped out by insects, arthropods, and a host of microorganisms doesn't alter the non-technical, but still meaningful, fact of occurring without the help of involvement by charismatic megafauna (other than the humans who construct the pile).

      There are--in my opinion--valid ethical arguments on both sides of the vegan/omni debate. What I don't think are validly supported by factual data are assertions that usable, soil-improving compost either "must" include megafauna manure or, alternatively that it "must NOT" include megafauna manure.

      Nature is diverse, right? Basic natural processes are accomplished in different ecosystems and niches through different specific actions of different species of organisms. Given that background, it would be surprising if their were only one basic way to convert dead organic matter into compost. Compost can be made in hot piles or in cold, mouldering piles; it can be made via aerobic biology or via anaerobic biology. Likewise it can be made with or without intentionally added feces.

      -Jonathan
    • fran k
      Wo. Now Theres a paradox and a joke there. We are so brainy and clever we are trashing the planet! Now that actually sounds like we have empty heads full of
      Message 54 of 54 , Apr 13, 2011
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        Wo. Now Theres a paradox and a joke there. We are so brainy and clever we are trashing the planet! Now that actually sounds like we have empty heads full of duck soup.

        Imo maybe the pachamama is using us to take it back in time 3 billion years, for it to start all over again with all the total 3 billion year old prehistoric laid down vegetable mass dug up and piped up back on top of the earth for the whole nature cycle to start all over again..

        :)frank

        On Wed, 13 Apr 2011 18:12 BST john willis wrote:

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        >The comment "if they had the brains" is the important one. We humans are way too clever for our own good and as a result we are trashing the planet.
        >John.
        >
        >To: pfaf@yahoogroups.com
        >From: michaels4gardens@...
        >Date: Mon, 4 Apr 2011 13:46:44 -0700
        >Subject: Re: [pfaf] Re: Composting
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        > ahh, -- the refreshing voice of reason,
        >
        >--- On Mon, 4/4/11, Infowolf1@... <Infowolf1@...> wrote:
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        >From: Infowolf1@... <Infowolf1@...>
        >Subject: Re: [pfaf] Re: Composting
        >To: pfaf@yahoogroups.com
        >Date: Monday, April 4, 2011, 7:19 AM
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        >the idea of human created species is sloppy. All of these animals have precedents
        >among wild types, some extinct some not.
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        >the writer is trying to make the point, I think, that it is unnatural for us to be
        >eating animals period, since they are farmed, I suppose we should only eat
        >animals we hunt and kill in the wild.
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        >Also, he may be angling that those animals that have been
        >modified from their original form by selective breeding for thousands of generations,
        >are unnatural, and their behavior probably ditto. (something can be said for this
        >regarding some breeds of dog. However, abnormal behavior has been observed
        >in the wild, as well as in captivity, in non modified animals. downright vicious
        >and sometimes perverted.)
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        >and, that such animals may be unwholesome to eat. I think this is the trend
        >of thought, I have encountered the second point in another egroup more
        >explicitly.
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        >But his logic is totally false. the animals who eat animals as part of the natural
        >order, sometimes follow herds. The next step, if they had the brains, would
        >be to control the herds, select food that makes them more palatable, and
        >even eliminate all the ones they do not want reproducing and let only those
        >reproduce that beget more muscle hence more meat.
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        >Humans are a part of the natural order, but can wayyy overdo it.
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        >Mary Christine
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        >In a message dated 4/4/2011 4:13:12 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time, michaels4gardens@... writes:
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        >Humans have created no animal species, Humans have guided the evolution of some of them, -- Humans are not smart enough yet to create new viable species of animals. this kind thinking is amazing to me, --
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        >--- On Sun, 4/3/11, john willis <wilf1946@...> wrote:
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        >From: john willis <wilf1946@...>
        >Subject: RE: [pfaf] Re: Composting
        >To: pfaf@yahoogroups.com
        >Date: Sunday, April 3, 2011, 9:23 AM
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        >Again everyone seems to be getting confused between wild animals and human-created ones. The wild ones are a natural part of our planet whereas the human-created ones are a totally unnatural aberration.
        >Giant tortoises eating dead tortoises is fine as is blackbirds eating worms - but humans eating farmed animals (or their by-products) is an abuse of the natural order.
        >I do wish people would stop this ridiculous thing of linking the wild and artificial when stating that using animals is natural or necessary.
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        >To: pfaf@yahoogroups.com
        >From: michaels4gardens@...
        >Date: Sat, 2 Apr 2011 03:40:05 -0700
        >Subject: Re: [pfaf] Re: Composting
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        >I have eaten with the Hopi, --it was not a vegetarian menu, --where does all this "info" come from??
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        >--- On Sat, 4/2/11, Sheila <w50srj@...> wrote:
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        >From: Sheila <w50srj@...>
        >Subject: [pfaf] Re: Composting
        >To: pfaf@yahoogroups.com
        >Date: Saturday, April 2, 2011, 1:22 AM
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        >ummm frank, giant tortoises eat carrion including dead giant tortoises....so do the iguanas
        >sheila
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        >--- In pfaf@yahoogroups.com, fran k <frank_bowman@...> wrote:
        >>
        >> This is off topic below! But it is an interesting response. (From big head me!) :)
        >>
        >> Na. I think your slighty wrong there. Theres the hopi indians with their 3 sisters, Arent they reckoned to be vegetarians? If not vegan, and the wider community nation, that they are a part of. Plus, I cant imagine that one or two of the millions of little tribes that existed on earth prior to the start 6000 years ago of our artificially massive mono competitive patriarchy civilisaton werent compassionate of other animals with whom they like we now would have had empathy for there pain.
        > And by empathy and compassion I mean that they Wouldnt harm them in the same way as care we didnt harm our grannies. The physiology of the human is fruitarian like the bnobos, and other close ape cousins. Length of gut and teeth bear this out. We have same as they. But I do have my own theory that humans slightly veer out of the fruitarian scenario, with the addition of raw fish, as there are too many clues pointing to our love of swimming and water, and especially the
        >> cooking of meat flesh points to this, by tenderising it to resemble the eating qualities of raw fish flesh. Eskimos eating raw meat flesh? no dont think so, as most of their diet was raw fish flesh. Plus as far as other animals are concerned theres many other vegan animals. 3 of the 5 most dangerous in africa are vegan. Cape buffallo. Elephant, Rhino.
        >>
        >> Plus all but one species that originally existed for millenia on the Gallapogus islands were all vegans, the
        > cormorants eat mainly seaweed, the Iguanas eat mainly bay, and them theres the giant tortoises and on and on.
        >>
        >> The majority of the people living on the planet now, especially in the poorest countries are vegetarian.
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        >> It is the commonest diet, in the world.
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        >> Best really not to go there as far as this issue is concerned. Let people be. Difference between a meat diet and a vegan one is that both dont prioritise raw fish, so if what you say about vegan diet is actually true, then cooked meat is just as new and artificial too.
        >>
        >> As far as soil is concerned. It is an amazing mystery. There are more lifeforms below the earth than above, and there is more mass of life below too. If an alien came to the planet first of all theyd call it a water planet, then theyd note that most of the life lives below it. This made me think about plants and trees. Are the plants and trees actually the thing we
        > call the roots. And what we see above the actual roots.
        >>
        >> When I first started growing trees and plants, I noticed that if I put empty pots out id get silver birch and willow appearing in them! Without even planting them theyd just appear. As if carried through the air and from the birds lots of varieties of seeds may have dropped into them, but the ones that grew in the pots were ones that loved the compost mix in the pot. Which led me to think Aye aye, maybe you dont even have to plant out trees and plants at all. Imagine, if, with a knowledge of making the right soil mixes in different places, the trees and plants that you wanted would just appear there like weeds do, loving and thriving in the soil thats just right.
        >>
        >> I also have an idea that the soil changes itself to suit what is growing in it. For instance around here there is just grass, so the soil will only really have The culture and life in it which thrives in
        > a grass ecosystem. As other plants arent growing in it what would be the point of other types of soil flora and fauna being there. So when I come along and start to plant all sorts of trees, then at first they struggle to grow and I would expect it will take some time for the soil to change its constituency and structure to cater for the new plants.
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        >> So maybe coming back to this issue of compost, if as most have said, that a good all round mix of all stuff that composts down and changes to soil is best, as the roots and the mycorhizal fungi will find in amongst all of it what they need.
        >> Hey, just thought. Vegans using vegan compost to grow vegan food, soil then adapts itself to grow those foods for them the best!
        >>
        >> :) frank
        >>
        >> On Fri, 01 Apr 2011 17:15 BST Tom Gibson wrote:
        >>
        >> >
        >> >I find this a very curious statement. The soil is filled with animals
        >> >and fungi
        > that all show remarkable signs of sentience. Plants likewise
        >> >grow healthiest when they are part of communities of living things that
        >> >communicate and cooperate with each other for their livelihoods. In many
        >> >ways the interactions in these communities are far more complex than
        >> >what we see in animals. I am puzzled by people that say they don't want
        >> >to harm animals but they have no such feelings for plants and fungi
        >> >based on the mistaken assumption that they are too simple a life form to
        >> >care about.
        >> >
        >> >I believe that all life is sacred and we need to treat all life equally.
        >> >If those lives are in our care then we have a responsibility to make
        >> >them the best lives possible and to not waste or discriminate against
        >> >anything that life produces. We have a responsibility to make sure that
        >> >all animals, including
        > humans, have a good death, not a lingering one
        >> >because we are too heartless to help someone or some animal pass when
        >> >it's time has come. Having not seen one traditional society that is
        >> >vegetarian or vegan I believe this is an phenomenon that only exists and
        >> >is only possible in highly industrialized countries and while
        >> >interesting of only passing interest. If we want to learn how to feed
        >> >ourselves as part of a long term proposition and not be dependent on
        >> >external industrialized sources then animals must be a part of an
        >> >integrated diversified farming system that can provide all necessary
        >> >nutrition.
        >> >
        >> >Tom
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        >> > We are vegans and our compost is so popular >
        >> >> Blessings Annie and family :)
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