Ecological Farming

Articles/posts about how we farm using "ecological" principles and practices.

Why We Don't Say We're "Organic"

The main reason is that the term "Organic" is a legal definition.

The USDA has restricted the use of the term by bureaucratically limiting it's use for businesses who meet the requirements set up by government entities.

So while we believe our practices would be true to the definition of a Noah Webster, we don't know that they would under the subjective mandates of a government agency.

Regaining Lost Knowledge

It's interesting - and a little disappointing - that a lot of what was once common knowledge to farmers has been lost.

The appreciation of the seasonality of the local fruit supply has been diminished by the year-round availability of produce at the grocery store.  Strawberries ripen in May and June.  Tomatoes are early if they're ready in July.  I would guess most of us don't realize this.

The Issue with Conventional Farming

Much is made today - in some circles - of the problems with conventional farming's use of chemicals.

Research shows that the chemicals are harmful to humans who work in farming or who eat the farmer's fruit.

Our observation is a little different...and a stronger argument against not only the overuse of chemicals in farming, but also against some of it's practices.

Our observation is that the main focus of farming should not be on increasing crop yields, or on fixing the weed problem, or on killing the insect pests.

History

The farm has been in our family for more than a hundred years.  Our great-grandfather and grandmother and their children grew beans, peppers, corn, sorghum and more on about forty acres of tillable land.  The men hunted rabbits, ducks, and deer and grew cattle, pigs, and chickens for food and horses and oxen for working the farm.

Over the years, as the men found work off the farm, the tillable land was leased to other farmers who grow black-eyed peas, soybeans and corn.

The Soil System

"...we might say that a wholesome soil environment, in good pH and nutritional valance, is actually the first priority.  It naturally follows that the nitrogen-carbon system can begin to work to fuel the whole soil energy system for a perpetual release of nutrition.  The soil now becomes self-sustaining, but only if we cultivate the art and exercise common sense judgment as we farm the soils.  It is then that protein production results and synthetic chemical and herbicidal systems are really not required.  In the final analysis, it is protein agriculture that makes it possi

Ecological Farming

Our working definition is "Implementing observed natural processes in agricultural production." Natural processes are amazingly complex. They involve multiple related factors, holistic relationships (especially between different species), balances, and efficiencies of inputs to produce quality outputs. And, although we cannot expect to replicate what happens in nature completely, by focusing on what we know and understand, we should be able to expect to realize better results than if we ignore altogether what happens naturally. Consider a tree.