“Eliminate the Terms ‘Tillage’ and ‘No-Till’” – The No-Till Farmer
This is wonderful commentary on the dangers of of rigidly sticking to past ideas and terms about gardening and farming, which are constantly being improved by knowledge and technology. This is a mistake I have made in the past, especially with a determination to use zero tillage in my beds.
For my Fall garden I did properly hoe out the soil to a loose consistency. And lo and behold my small seeded crops are actually germinating properly. It’s important to remember that Edward Faulkner actually advocated using a shallow disc-harrow, which is really considered “no-till” by today’s standards.
I found this part especially fascinating and frustrating, and a prime example of how many agriculture traditions continue long after they should expire,
“Corn doesn’t want to grow in rows. Corn is a grass. We wanted it to grow in rows because of the width of the engines we had available at the time, which where horse and oxen. Today the entire understanding and mechanics of corn are based on the width of horse and oxen. The religion of corn production has grown around the width of horse and oxen. Can you imagine how difficult it would be to erode soil in a solid stand corn field? How sad that we still grow it corn rows and have to contour plant or simply let the water and sun have a free shot at bare soil for much of the year.”