August 1, 2019
Farming Colorado soils has been quite an adventure. When we first moved to the property, the owners told us that the soil here was 'no good' and nothing would be able to grow here. You could imagine how our hearts sank. So we sent some samples off for testing to see what we were dealing with and how we could fix it.
When the call came in from the soil consultant who read through our results, he said this was one of the best soil samples he had seen in Colorado! It turns out we had actually hit the jackpot.
Our organic matter showed 10%! The average measurement of organic matter on California farms was 2%.
The only thing we needed to work on was aeration, since our clay levels were high, but with high clay comes tons of minerals. So that is what we have set out to do and it is one of the main reasons we farm in a 'no-till' way (after the initial till to kill the pasture grass when we create a new block of beds).
By disturbing the soil as little as possible we are able to create a healthy environment for all of the microorganisms, and worms that help to aerate the soil and assist the plants in up-taking all the nutrients.
We are able to do this because of some very inventive hand farming tools like the BCS tractor, cultivating hoes and tarping. If you pass by our farm in early spring or right before winter you will see it covered in black tarps. This is part of our weed prevention/reduction program. Less weeds = less need to till. More microorganism = more nutritious vegetables! Win win!