the irresistible fleet of bicycles


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7th annual soil & nutrition conference takes place from nov 28-30th in southbridge ma

SNC7 Email Flyer 1.jpgThe 7th annual soil and nutrition conference organisers are committed to raising the quality of nutrition in food, beyond organics. Dan Kittredge, this year’s keynote speaker and  founder of the Bionutrient Food Association has taught 2,500 farmers, in 27 states in the last 6 years how to grow food with high Brix levels.

On the first day of the conference Dan will introduce the Bionutrient Meter, which any consumer can use to determine which vegetables, fruits, flours, and the highest in nutrition, and buy those. Over the past several decades the concentration of vitamins and minerals in our food has steadily decreased and unsustainable industrial agricultural practices have polluted water tables and undermined ecosystems The rate of degenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s, diabetes and heart disease have increased during this same time period. While correlation and causation are not the same thing, the food and water we consume undeniable has an effect on our overall health and well-being.

This conference will explore the principles, techniques and practices at the intersection of farm and human ecosystems that can be applied to improve environmental sustainability, food quality, and overall well-being by bringing together the collective knowledge of the food and environmental movements and by integrating diverse viewpoints.

To register for the conference or to learn more, click HERE 

carbon farming workshop: sequestering carbon for climate change mitigation

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Carbon Poster 2.jpgBelieve it or not, there is some good news about climate change; agriculture, if done correctly can play a powerful role in removing carbon from the atmosphere where it is wreaking havoc. This can be done by taking carbon from the atmosphere and putting it into the soil where it has the power to increase fertility, hold water, and improve crop yields. Learn more at the one-day Carbon Farming workshop in October as part of the Marin Carbon Project.


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biochar, worth all the hype?

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I first heard about biochar from a gentle and unassuming older lady who was making biochar at home in her kiln. She explained the role that biochar could play in both the fight against climate change and the improvement of soil quality, before gifting me a small bag of it to try out in my own small vegetable garden. I decided to carry out some citizens science in my back yard and put biochar to the test. I planted 5 squash plants and added biochar to the soil for two of the five. To be frank, I didn’t really know what to expect but I will happily test anything that will  organically allow me to fight climate change and grow better vegetables at the same time.

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new institute focused on nation’s soil health

To ensure that soil continues to be a vital natural resource for generations to come, The Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation and Farm Foundation, NFP, today announce the formation of the Soil Health Institute. The announcement coincides with World Soil Day (Dec. 5) and celebrates the 2015 International Year of Soils.

The Soil Health Institute’s mission is to safeguard and enhance the vitality and productivity of the soil. It will work directly with conventional and organic farmers and ranchers, public- and private-sector researchers, academia, policymakers, government agencies, industry, environmental groups and consumers–everyone who benefits from healthy soils.

The organization will serve as the primary resource for soil health information, working to set soil health standards and measurement, build knowledge about the economics of soil health, offer educational programs, and coordinate research in all aspects of soil and soil health.

For more information, click HERE.


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video on agroforestry fundamentals: a must watch for all

A Swiss-born man named Ernst Gotsch has spent the past 30 years developing an agroforestry system based on the natural succession of species and soil improvement in Brazil. He has developed and refined a technique of planting which can be applied to different ecosystems, but his actions in Bahia, Brazil have lead to the complete restoration of nearly 1200 acres of degraded Atlantic rainforests (from logging, pig farming, monocultures, etc). To see more of his videos, click HERE.  <—And we really do hope you check out more of his videos, this guy is amazing.