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1 Beaverton GARD- CPOST&SOIL
1 Burnside Gardening- Organic Gardening
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22 Local Warehouse Gardening- Organic Gardening
25 Remote Warehouse Gardening- Organic Gardening

This title in other editions

Teaming with Microbes: The Organic Gardener's Guide to the Soil Food Web


Teaming with Microbes: The Organic Gardener's Guide to the Soil Food Web Cover

ISBN13: 9781604691139
ISBN10: 1604691131
All Product Details




The images in this book have forewarned you: you may find things in your soil that, upon closer examination, will scare the daylights out of you. (In general we advise against putting anything under an electron microscope. At that level, all life has teeth!) The point is, when you get a good look at some of the microarthropods present in soil, you may never want to put your hands in the soil again. Sometimes ignorance really is bliss; however, in this instance a little knowledge is not going to hurt you and will actually help you be a better gardener. Just remember, you put your hands in the soil before you knew what was there and never got hurt.

You will want to repeat the following procedures with soils from each of your gardens and lawn areas, and even around specific trees and shrubs. We have done this dozens of times in our own yards, and what we find never fails to astonish us.

Start by digging a hole in the soil at issue, about 12 inches (30 centimeters) square. Use a spade or trowel — it doesn't matter, and measurements don't have to be exact. Put all the soil you dig up onto a tarp or in a box so you can then sift through it, looking for the bigger animals you might find in the soil: worms, beetles, insect larvae — any living organism you can see with the naked eye and pick up without having to resort to tweezers. Keep track of what you are finding.

None of us are trained at identifying all the organisms in our soils, and frankly the variety of them is so great as to be beyond the scope of this book. Do your best in making identifications. Seek help from others. In time you will become sufficiently proficient for the purpose. This is new stuff, and just being exposed to it will make the learning experience easier. It didn't take us very long, and it won't take you long to become familiar with soil food web organisms.

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athomps3, May 10, 2010 (view all comments by athomps3)
I have taken quite a few college science courses, which made the reading pretty easy but I have a hard time seeing a personal without this background get through some of the stickier sections in the book. Teaming with Microbes provides excellent detail and microbiology background. There philosophy has a “going green” approach which I appreciate and wish to try on my own future lawn and garden, although I am not sure how well things will take in the short growing season up in northern North Dakota! The authors gave insight to inexpensive ways to create my own compost tea as well as “checking for critters” contraptions. The authors have a personal touch through their “voice” which appears throughout the fairly short 180 page book supplemented by just enough colorful pictures to support the text in my opinion. I do feel that more stats and evidence would strengthen their argument, but I am eager to try their approach with the helpful and practical tips provided at the end of the book for easy reference. I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in learning the biology about the soil food web as well, the benefits of “teaming with microbes”, and creating your own natural, healthy garden and lawn. If there really are no mistakes in gardening, and merely experiments I highly recommend taking a chance on this book!
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Product Details

Lowenfels, Jeff
Timber Press (OR)
Foreword by:
Ingham, Elaine
Ingham, Elaine
Lewis, Wayne
Soil ecology
Gardening-Organic Gardening
Edition Description:
Publication Date:
9.25x6.25x1.00 in. 1.38 lbs.

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Featured Titles » Cooking and Gardening
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Teaming with Microbes: The Organic Gardener's Guide to the Soil Food Web New Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$24.95 In Stock
Product details 220 pages Timber Press (OR) - English 9781604691139 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Lowenfels and Lewis describe the activities of the organisms that make up the soil food web and explain how to cultivate the life of the soil. This text offers an accessible guide for gardeners who want to grow healthy, vigorous plants without resorting to chemicals.
"Synopsis" by ,
When we use chemical fertilizers, we injure the microbial life that sustains healthy plants, and thus become increasingly dependent on an arsenal of artificial substances, many of them toxic to humans as well as other forms of life. But there is an alternative to this vicious circle: to garden in a way that strengthens, rather than destroys, the soil food web — the complex world of soil-dwelling organisms whose interactions create a nurturing environment for plants.
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