USA: TX, MS, FL, CA, AR, NM; Mexico, Rep. Dominicana, Côté d'Ivoire, Nigeria,
Nicaragua, Honduras, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Haiti, England, India, Uzbekistan
Workshops in organic, no-till, permanent bed gardening, mini-farming and mini-ranching worldwide in English & Español
Profitable Crop Production
These are based on the internet, US & international agriculture magazines, experiences teaching agriculture in many countries, research and farmer experiences in those countries and a demonstration garden. They are ecologically sustainable, environmentally responsible, socially just and economically viable. There is unlimited, documented proof. No-till farming requires a no-till planter and/or a no-till drill. On mechanized farms no-till reduced production cost 30% the first year and tripled profits in five years. [Argentine]. On mini-farms, the following will increase yields and reduce the labor by half compared to traditional methods . There are 200,000,000 no-till acres worldwide.
Mechanized : 1985-2000, Dr. Morrison, TX research station, proved that permanent beds with permanent tracks increase yield 15%. In 2002, A D Hughes [806-866-5667] decided to go no-till and purchased a no-till planter. He planted the cotton, harvested the cotton, planted wheat, knocked down the wheat and he was ready to plant again. His cost went to the basement, especially fuel cost. Buster Adair [806-755-2532] has been no-till [cotton] for twenty years. Steve Groff [cedarmeadowfarm.com ] has been no-till [vegetables, corn] for 30 years.
Mini-farms : Fukaoka Farm, Japan, has been no-till [rice, small grains, vegetables] for 70 years. An Indian farmer has been no-till [vegetables] for 5 years. A Malawi farmer has been no-till [vegetables] on permanent beds for 25 years. A Honduras farmer has been no-till [vegetables & fruit] on permanent beds on the contour (73° slope] for 11 years. Ruth Stout [USA] had a no-till garden for 30 years and 7,000 people visited her garden.
No technique yet devised by mankind has been anywhere near as effective at halting soil erosion and making food production truly sustainable as No-till (Baker)
1. Open mind.
2. Willing to make changes [first, in the mind and second, in the field & pasture ]
3. Restore soil to its natural health. [Contamination: inorganic pesticides, insecticides, herbicides, fertilizers, etc.]
4. Maintain healthy soil [produces crops with few diseases, pests and weeds. Healthy soil produces healthy crops to have healthy people.
5. Feed the soil; not the crop
6. Increase the soil organic matter every year
7. Maintain plant diversity [with crops and with green manure/cover crops]
8. Manage crops for highest profit per acre; not highest yield per acre]
9. Little or no external inputs [It is not necessary to buy anything from anybody. Certain things are recommended]
10. Leave all crop residues on top of the soil.
11. No-till: no plowing, no disking, no cultivating
12. Permanent beds
13. Sloped land [Beds on the contour; no terraces]
14. Permanent paths [walking; mini-farms]
15. Hand tools and power-hand tools for mini-farms
16. Permanent tracks [tractor wheels. 15% yield increase.]
17. Tractor [small] & no-till planter and/or drill [no lister, no plows, no tandem disk, no cultivators]
18. Organic fertilizers
19. Organic disease control.
20. Organic herbicides.
21. Organic pesticides.
22. Biological pest control.
23. Attract beneficials [bats, birds, insects, toads, spiders, snakes, frogs, lizards, grasshopper mice, opossums]
24. Protect pollinators [honey bees, native bees, wasps, yellow jackets, dirt daubers, butterflies ]
25. Protect soil organisms [worms, micros]
26. Soil always covered
27. Use mulch/green manures/cover crops
28. Feed the soil through the mulch.
29. Organic matter [Free. When economically feasible, transport to the farm. Use as mulch]
30. Compost [for special uses or to use surplus organic matter]
31. Drip irrigation [Purchase or DIY using poly]
32. Seed [open-pollinated; heirloom vegetables].
33. Alternative/foreign/ethnic crops [grains, fruits, roots, vegetables, fibers, herbs, nuts, medicinals, flowers, dyes, syrups, sweeteners, crafts, seeds, spices and ornamentals. Natural colored cotton from India and Peru]
34. Marketing [No contracts with corporation. Market may be only for your production
35. Alternative marketing [think outside the box]
36. Value-added products [very profitable]
37. Agri-training and/or educational tours [train others, especially young people]
38. Protect nature [wildlife, native plants, streams & riparians, ponds & lakes, wetlands, deserts, forest and prairies.]
39. Imitate nature. Most farmers fight nature. ¡Nature always wins!
Future Organic Farmers of America [FOFA] should be organized in every high school in America. Minifarms@gmail.com
If you would like a list of website, DVDs, etc for further research, etc. request it from firstname.lastname@example.org.