[permaculture] arid soil building

Dieter Brand diebrand at yahoo.com
Wed Dec 16 12:06:36 EST 2009


> In the Summer, nitrogen from animal manures, mulches, and 
> compost just returns to the air if there is not sufficient
> irrigation. 

N is the first nutrient to volatize anyways, no matter what the condition.  But I think, unless we are doing chemical farming, we shouldn't get too fixated about N. In humus, N just changes into different forms such as bacteria, and even if a chemical analysis doesn't show much N at a given time, it doesn't mean plants won't be able to access N and all other nutrient present in organically bound form, which are not shown in the normal soil test.

Dieter Brand
Portugal



--- On Tue, 12/15/09, Rain Tenaqiya <raincascadia at yahoo.com> wrote:

> From: Rain Tenaqiya <raincascadia at yahoo.com>
> Subject: [permaculture] arid soil building
> To: permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org
> Date: Tuesday, December 15, 2009, 7:46 PM
> I agree with Dieter on the folly of
> generalizing too much about Mediterranean climates (or
> practically anything else).  As far as fertility goes, arid
> climates can have very fertile soils because their minerals
> don't get leached out as much.  Coastal California and
> Australia generally have infertile soils because they are so
> old, and have been leached for millions of years.  Chile,
> interior California, and the Mediterranean have a lot of
> recent volcanic activity (at least in some areas), and
> therefore have more fertile soils.  I don't know much about
> South Africa.
>  
> One thing that has barely been touched upon is how nutrient
> cycling varies from more humid temperate climates.  In the
> Summer, nitrogen from animal manures, mulches, and compost
> just returns to the air if there is not sufficient
> irrigation.  This means that we need to think differently
> about how to manage these things in Mediterranean climates.
>  
> Rain
> 
> 
>       
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