Ray Archuleta talks about three basic concepts for soil health during an Illinois Conservation Cropping Seminar.
- One: The soil is alive.
A living plant is one of the most powerful tools on the farm. Plants and microbes feed the soil ecosystem and improve the quality of life.
- Two: Everything is connected.
If it isn’t understood how the soil, inputs, crops, and management practices are connected, then harm can come from using tools incorrectly.
- Three: The goal is to emulate nature (or “biomimicry”).
While efficiency has been a No. 1 priority, now it is known that the best approach is to mimic the natural system.
Archuleta says while these seem simple, the most challenging obstacle to overcome when adopting these three concepts is your mind-set.
“Thanks to the years of information we gained from our schools, our grandparents, and from our local community, our mind-set is the most difficult thing to change on the farm. The soil is easy to fix. Our mind-set is not,” he says.