It’s Alive! Jeff Lowenfels on the Web – the Soil Food Web
You’ve heard that soil is alive. What does that mean?
On this week’s show Jeff Lowenfels talks about billions of organisms that live in healthy soil (microscopic examples, below). In Teaming with Microbes: The Organic Gardener’s Guide to the Soil Food Web, Lowenfels and co-author Wayne Lewis explain that the food chain of organisms is not one straight line with humans at the top – if anything, plants are at the top -- and it is not a straight line, but multiple overlapping lines forming a kind of web.
After introducing many different types of life in the earth, the authors present a review of some concepts to help us organic gardeners fine tune our soil. Did you know: some plants prefer soils dominated by bacteria, others by fungi; compost teas can be customized to be fungal, bacterial, or a balance of both by choosing what they are made from; most trees, shrubs and perennials prefer nitrogen in ammonium form; most vegetables, annuals and grasses prefer their nitrogen in nitrate form? These are just a few of the revealing facts in this new edition of Teaming with Microbes.
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