No-Till Farming

Yay!! I’ve lost 25.6 pounds total so far with 54.4 pounds to go to reach my goal!  My BMI has dropped from 36.9 to 33.1 and my goal is 24.9.

Natural Weight Loss


No-Till Farming

The practice of tilling the soil began back in the earliest farming days, based on the idea that by breaking up the crust of the soil you make it easier for seeds to take root and grow and keep weeds under control.

However, repeated tilling breaks down the structure of soil, causing erosion and runoff, and disturbs the microbes and fungi in the soil supporting healthy plant growth.

Studies show tilling combined with chemicals results in little or no carbon sequestration.

Organic methods, on the other hand, can sequester lots of carbon in the soil – even with a bit of tilling.

In a 3-year study, corn was grown with no-till practices on separate plots to see which ones had the most productive soils.

Those turned out to be organic plots.

They had more carbon and nitrogen and yielded 18% more corn than the other plots did.

Tillage is a major cause of agricultural land degradation and poses a threat to food production and rural livelihoods, especially in poor and densely populated areas of the developing world.

Tilling also impacts climate change in other ways.

Each time farmers operate their tractors, they compact the soil, harm the microbes in it, and burn fuel, spewing even more carbon dioxide and other pollutants into the air.

Masanobu Fukuoka, an organic pioneer from Japan and author of The One-Straw Revolution, saw the threat of tilling back in the 1970s.

He developed a method of coating seeds in clay so they could be sowed on top of the soil.

“That which was viewed as primitive and backward,” he observed, “is now unexpectedly seen to be far ahead of modern science.”

Not tilling doesn’t make a farm organic, but it’s a key to being successful at organic farming and reducing the carbon impact.

An unintended consequence of no-till farming is it encourages chemical farmers to use more chemicals.

The conservation regulations in the farm bill now require farmers to use no-till practices for erosion control.

But weeds still grow, and instead of tilling or managing weeds organically, chemical farmers add a few more rounds of herbicide rather than planting cover crops or applying mulch, methods both more effective and better for people and the planet.

Chemical farmers may plant cover crops, but then use herbicides to kill the plants before planting their cash crop.

Many chemical farmers feet requiring them to use no-till practices puts them in a bind and forces them to use more chemicals.

The real problem lies in the approach of picking one or two techniques of organic farming and not recognizing it works as an integrated system.

The system may vary for each farm, each region, each country, and each continent.

But, the main principles of organic farming are the same.

Come join me on my weight loss journey!  I’d love to have you along!

Have an awesome day!

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If you’d like to read Organic Manifesto, go here Organic Manifesto: How Organic Food Can Heal Our Planet, Feed the World, and Keep Us Safe


Dick and Lenay

email: – 715-431-0657

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