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"Secrets of the Soil" by Peter Tompkins & Christopher Bird

Secrets of the SoilIf you don't deal well with the notion of mixing cow dung, ghee, rice, and balsa wood, burning it in an upside down copper pyramid and spreading it to enhance the spiritual quality of your garden, then you might just pass on this book.

However, if you can keep an open mind about such concepts, then this book has a lot to say. It touches on the history of the chemical fertilizer industry which is making a mess of our soil and how an early municipal composting project was eliminated and by whom. The book explores far out concepts like Rudolph Steiner's biodynamic methods of agriculture and more basic ideas of how soil is created by micro-organisms and earthworms.

It also investigates convoluted and disparate topics. Soil research, the Hunza lifestyle as the secret to longevity, explanations of chelation and colloidal properties of humus are all linked to lichens, Inca masonry, and iron-melting plants.

Amber waves of grain is a recent development as is fertilizer, weed killer, and GMOs. Before this the buffalo got fat on weeds from sea to shining sea. Are we better off with GMO grain than we were with weeds?

There is a chapter on how the CIA and world scientists believe the increasing greenhouse effects are going to cause global cooling. The petrochemical industry hides this information from us. They want us to accept the idea of global warming.

To prevent another ice age we have to grind up glacial rock and convince the world's air forces to spread this rock dust over the entire earth so we can plant trees.

Throughout the book the authors present good ideas (sick soil leads to sick people) with some fairly whacked out twists.

In the end, this book forces us to look at the big picture. Caring for plants and the soil is not just about biodynamics but is a spiritual necessity.


Another review of "Secrets of the Soil."
Another book by the authors, "The Secret Life of Plants."

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