Building Healthy Soils

There are three pillars of healthy soil and addressing each area is important in getting your garden to flourish:

Soil Texture

Soil Nutrition

 Soil Life

When we get all 3 working together, we reduce our impact and the soils and plants work symbiotically together to improve garden soil. These are important steps in soil health management and soil balancing.

Soil Texture

Soil Texture is the technical term for the sand-silt-clay ratio. Your soils need sand to drain water, clay to hold water and make the soil stick together, and silt to hold on to nutrients, roughly speaking. When we have the ideal combination, we have “loamy soils,” that allow lawns and most of the common landscape plants to thrive.

Soil Nutrition

Soil Nutrition is the food in your soils and is critical to plant health. There are 17 nutrients that get used by your plants. Of those 17, three are considered “macronutrients” because they are used in the greatest quantity, nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium (N-P-K). Fertilizer technology over the last 70 years has focused on these three macronutrients and largely forgotten the minor nutrients. This is analogous to saying people can live on our three macronutrients of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats and skipping vitamins A, B, C, D, E, Zinc, Copper, Manganese, Calcium, etc. It’s inevitable in both cases that there will be problems.

It might be helpful to think about your soils just like the refrigerator in your kitchen — both are a place to hold nutrients until they are consumed. Just as you eat the food out of your refrigerator, the plants eat the food out of the soil. If we wanted to know what nutrients were missing from your refrigerator, the best thing to do is to open it and look inside. That is why we start our program with a comprehensive Soil Test to understand what’s in your soil’s “refrigerator”.

Soil Life

Soil Life refers to the probiotics in the soil. Probiotics are the microbial activity that not only breakdown nutrients in the soil and free them up for plants to use but are also a plant’s immune system. Biological films form around the root hairs of plants protecting them from invading viruses while still allowing good nutrition to pass through. These biofilms can also be found in the human body. They too act as our immune system and protect us in a similar way. This is why we eat things like yogurt and kombucha. Product packaging literally lists the different strains of good bacteria they contain.

For your lawn and other plants, we brew a probiotic tea, FertileTea, to restore the life in the soil. We apply this at scheduled intervals that coordinate with seasonal stages of plant cycles.

Another benefit of FertileTea is that it becomes a great carrying medium for other nutrients. Depending on the time of year we may be adding sea kelp, hydrolyzed fish, micronutrients and trace elements, mycorrhizal fungi, or humic/fulvic acids. By suspending these nutrients in a liquid, we can deliver them right to the root zone where they can be quickly absorbed. Hence the name FertileTea, as it is more than just a fabulous worm castings tea.

By understanding and replicating Nature, we allow Her to take care of Herself. This is the most efficient system for building long-term resiliency and reducing plant loss. We’re eager for you to see the results!

For more information related to Building Healthy Soils, please see: