Spring is here! Are you ready to be one with the earth? The warmer weather has arrived, tulips have emerged from the ground, and the buds are exposed on the trees. Garden nurseries have been anticipating our wondering eyes on their merchandise and preparing for our vast inquiries of garden necessities. Some of us are ready to take that leap and accomplish the long awaited goal of cultivating our own vegetables. But before we take that leap let us take a step to come to center for establishing our foundation of vegetable cultivation- bed (or soil) preparation. I write this blog piece to share the importance of soil, observing it and why it is precious to any vegetable garden set up.
Soil is vital in food cultivation and in garden preparation. It establishes everything in a garden from root systems to homes for various organisms while anchoring an internal space of safety and abundance. It is a continuous gift given by the earth and a medium that has been used since the beginning of time to cultivate food that sustained civiliations throughout history. As a sustainable urban grower and earth stewardess I want to make this fact known: SOIL IS NOT DIRT! Dirt has no nutritional value, it is debris that has no more use and is discarded as a result. Soil has nutrients and niches withinit to sustain the life of microorganisms, trees, flowers, and our vegetable crops; it can be used again to amend the earth or to grow an abundance of food. It is importance to acknowledge soil as life because it is just as precious as the vegetation grown in it to sustain our lives.
Observe the Soil
Pay attention to soil just like you pay attention to the vegetables you grow in it while venturing in your spring garden. Soil color and texture are indicators of vitality and health of a garden. Black soil is an indicator of high organic matter while sandy soil indicates the soil cannot hold water; there is a plethora of information online that helps to interpret soil. Wikipedia is a quick reference to use for color and types. If working an established garden avoiding soil erosion and fixing soil depletion are excellent methods of maintenance for preparing your garden. Check out my video about amending soil through kitchen composting. Observing live organisms in soil is another method of indication. Worms and rolly pollies in soil are your help because they amend it; if you see them they let you know they are happy there, so your vegetables will be also. Attention to soil is just as critical as the vegetables you grow in it, be encouraged to observe its appearance and the organisms as you prepare you spring garden.
Prolific soil equals prolific vegetables which mean the soil is precious and sustainable. Recognize this as you prepare your Spring garden bed. Soil is precious due to its dense nutrients, its ability to house so much life and willingness to give back with abundant crop yields. I believe it goes beyond potting medium bought at Home Depot and asthetically pleasing flower gardens in a front yard or dirty garden gloves after gardening. I believe soil is priceless because Mother Nature provides it freely and it is beautiful because of its dark rich color which indicates good health. Healthy soil produces healing vegetables for all who eat them. Knowing that soil is precious will help you to appreciate all it does- seen and unseen as you prepare for a sustainable garden season.