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Soil Microbial Analysis Changes with Nutrition Farming for Hawaii Project

Not all microbes are bad.  Human bodies contain about as many microbial cells as actual human cells.  This is called the human microbiome.  We live symbiotically with the microbes.  We actually could not live without them!

Our microbiome shifts as we change our diet and environment.  We receive healthy microbes from good, aerobic (oxygenated) soil.  This is another great reason to get out in your garden!

Beneficial microbiology in the soil is important to hold nutrients in the soil and make them available to the plants.  Measuring the microbial life in the soil is an important part of soil management.  You can’t manage what you don’t measure!

With the Nutrition Farming for Hawaii project, I measured the soil microbiology using my microscope when we were getting started with the garden in the spring.  Bacterial counts were only about 100 per slide field.

We amended the soil with the needed minerals and fertilizers.  These are very important to feed the microbes, as well as the plants.  Some minerals, like cobalt (which is rarely tested, but is on a Nutrition Grown™ soil analysis), are critical for microbes.  The microbes will not be there without the nutrients they need!   We also added a microbial inoculant to help get things going.

Retesting of soil is done every 6 months, including microbiology.  Our latest analysis showed 1500 bacteria per slide field.  A 1500% increase!

If you like this post, please leave a comment and share on your favorite social media by clicking an icon below.  Thanks,  Dr. Jana

Dr. Zach Bush interview on soil health affecting human health

Human health begins in the soil.  Hear the fascinating details from Dr. Zach Bush, a former cancer researcher, as interviewed by Dr. Joseph Mercola.  Dr. Bush started teaching his patients how to garden and change their diets to get well.  Enjoy!

VIDEO–Cobalt for Soil Microbes–similar info in Perfect Soil course

Checking the level of cobalt in your soil is very important.  This is a rarely tested mineral, but needed by 80% of soil-based microorganisms.  Cobalt is the central ion in the vitamin B-12 molecule.  In the Perfect Soil course, I will be teaching about cobalt and a LOT more minerals, all of which are critical for optimally-grown foods.  I hope you can join us!  Here’s the page link:  www.beyondorganicresearch.com/course

We are still in early registration–so call (808)938-9888 or email info@beyondorganicresearch.com today for a 30% discount off the course!

Mold Biotoxin Illness and its Correlation to Agriculture

I want to share what has been happening with me lately that may impact you or someone you know.  I’ve been recovering from toxic mold exposure.

I never thought much about mold.  It was just an annoying thing I had to clean off of leather items, like my saddle.  Come to find out, 1 in 4 people are genetically susceptible to mold biotoxin illness. (“Lucky me”, the 1 in 4.)  That means they cannot clear from their bodies the biotoxins that molds put off.

The biggest source of toxic mold is water-damaged buildings.  The US government claims that 1 in 2 buildings in the US is water-damaged.  This was the case for my illness.  Living in a humid environment tends to further compound matters.  You may not be able to see or smell the mold, but it can still make you gravely ill.  I hope you can realize the enormity of the issue.

These biotoxins create havoc by poisoning the body, causing inflammation throughout the body systems.  Symptoms are extremely variable depending on the other genetics and how well the various body systems can defend themselves.  Headaches, fatigue, brain fog, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea are probably the most common symptoms, but there are many others.  Most doctors don’t have a clue as to the cause of the condition, and write it off as some other disease or that it is all in one’s head.

My symptoms were unusual and none of the many doctors, holistic or conventional, I have seen through the years have understood the cause.  Yes, I was tested for many things, including allergies.  It was not that and, yes, the allergy doctor concluded that it was “in my head”.  Not!

More than one doctor offered me chemotherapy to suppress my immune system.  I told them “No!  I want to determine and remedy the cause, not just suppress my immune system so it won’t react.”

Another doctor prescribed oral, broad-spectrum antibiotics.  I told her I didn’t want to further impair my intestinal flora.

You really have to be your own advocate!

Fortunately, some functional medicine doctors do understand mold illness. However, good luck trying to get health insurance companies to pay for office visits or tests ordered by functional medicine doctors.

The genius researcher who has uncovered the truths about mold biotoxin illness is Dr. Ritchie Shoemaker.  He has an extensive testing and treatment protocol.  He no longer sees patients, but is training a growing number of physicians, who are listed on his website, www.survivingmold.com.

Mold biotoxin illness is not a new illness, but the incidence has increased with changes in building materials and construction.  With the effort to cut energy costs we now have “tight building syndrome”, which results in a greater concentration of indoor air pollution due to less air exchange.  In 1969, mold-retardant paints were introduced.  Just as antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains have developed due to the overuse of antibiotics, super-toxic molds have developed due to the use of mold-resistant paints.  What happens is that the organisms that aren’t killed develop more resistance over subsequent generations.  They proliferate because their weaker competitors have been killed off by the agent (mold-retardant paint or antibiotic).

The same thing can be seen in agriculture.  When nature is in balance, it is a self-regulating system, and life is good.  When humans interfere in the system with toxic agents, good and bad aspects of the system, i.e. microbes or insects, are all impacted, with the bad becoming more prevalent over time due to the resulting selection and lack of competition.

I am delighted to report that I am feeling much better now that I moved to a drier location, cleaned or discarded everything I own (while wearing a mold remediation mask), and got some truly helpful medication.  Yes, mold remediation is a huge undertaking.

Now I am happily back to my regular work of helping to grow the best foods ever!

Dr. Jana

Dr. Bogs to Speak at Natural Farming Symposium

You’re Invited!

The Hawaii Farmers Union United – East Hawaii Chapter is holding the First Annual Natural Farming Symposium, Oct. 1, 2 and 3, 2015 at the Komohana Research and Ag Complex in Hilo, Hawaii. This event features hands-on learning workshops, expert panels and presentations by practitioners, farm-to-table catering, farm tours, including all-natural smell-, fly- and run-off- free piggeries, and the premiere of ‘In Search of Balance,’ a documentary linking health and soil quality.

Dr. Bogs will be speaking on the soil panel Friday afternoon (October 2nd).  Her topic will be Manage your Microbes, discussing how to replenish and take care of the beneficial soil microorganisms that make nutrients available to our plants.

Soil Microbes Images credit: piremongolia.wordpress.com

Soil Microbes
Images credit: piremongolia.wordpress.com

See Hawaii Farmers Union United – East Hawaii Chapter’s Facebook page for ticket information about the Symposium. Tickets are available at Sweet Cane Cafe in Hilo or go to the Natural Farming Symposium’s EventBrite page (http://www.eventbrite.com/e/natural-farming-symposium-2015-tickets-17681217999?aff=es2) for tickets.

Soil and Compost Microbiology Analyses Now Available in Hawaii

With all the talk about microbes in the soil, natural farming and composting, have you ever wondered what little critters you have in your soil?  Now you can find out!  Dr. Bogs is now offering soil and compost microbiology analyses with recommendations for improving the balance of microbes.  You can also have your inoculant materials analyzed.  Sometimes, expensive and highly-touted microbial products actually have very few active microbes.

Knowing the types and amounts of microbes are present in your soil and compost can help resolve some problems you may be experiencing.  Having the right types and amounts of microbes for the type of crop you are growing can boost production while decreasing weed pressure.   How?  Microbes makes nutrients available to plants.  Some microbes can even fix nitrogen from the air!  Weeds like a bacterially-dominated soil, so getting more beneficial fungi working can decrease weeds.  Besides bacteria and fungi, protozoa and nematodes play roles in the soil.  Getting your soil’s mineral balance right, along with getting your soil’s microbial balance right, gives your crops the nutrition they need to supply the finest, most delicious food for you!

How to take Soil Samples for Microbial Analyses

You can use similar tools and methods as described in the section on this website about how to sample for soil nutrient analyses, but you only need to sample to a depth of 3 inches (7.5 cm).  Most of the same guidelines apply.  Use gloves–don’t touch the soil.  Be sure to remove organic material from the soil surface before taking samples.  Because you need only 3-inch deep cores, you can use an apple corer, if that is easier for you.  These corers can be found in kitchen supply sections of department stores.

If sampling under plants, take core samples half-way between the stem/trunk and the drip line of the leaves.  Take enough care samples to make up a volume of about one-half cup of soil.  Be careful to not expose the samples to extreme temperatures.

Microbial analyses can also be performed on compost and compost tea.  For compost, take several small samples throughout your compost pile, about 2 feet in, and combine into a composite sample.  If all of your piles are uniform, you will need to send only one composite sample.  If your piles are different, they will need to be sampled and tested individually as results can vary widely.  Compost tea will need to be sealed well in a bottle and shipped quickly, or hand delivered.

You can order these analyses here on the website (just order a soil analysis and put in a note to specify that you want a microbial analysis) or schedule a farm visit by calling 938-9888.  For those outside of Hawaii, microbiological analyses are available from an alternative laboratory.  Please email info@BeyondOrganicResearch.com for additional information.  Aloha!

Here is where we get to see the invisible world!

Here is where we get to see the invisible world!