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Could Biodynamic Farming be Used in Plantations?
Plantations are wide areas of land designated for planting and cultivation of industrial and trading crops like tobacco, cotton, sugar cane and coffee. There are also plantations that exist for wood or timber. These large pieces of estate and farms are most common in tropical and subtropical countries. There is even a system of tilting and tilling the harvests and bounties. Mostly, land owners commission resident laborers to take care and guard the plantations in exchange for cash or goods payments or simply permission to inhabit in a portion of the land. Did you know that biodynamic farming could be applied to it as well?
Because of its great scale, costs for fertilizers are usually waived. Owners realize that because the trees and crops in plantations are usually sturdy and resistant from pests, it is better and more practical to let crops live naturally. For quite some time, the practice of letting plantations nourish and take care of themselves has been rampant. Few people take note that nature does not leave plantations unattended. In the absence of synthetic fertilizers, nature has brought about earthworms to do the job.
Earthworms are small, crawling creatures that live beneath the soil. They are most common in moist soils, where they can live and roam around more freely. It is a common knowledge these days that crops in plantations and earthworms are living symbiotically and harmoniously.
Earthworms feed on organic matters from the trees like fallen leaves, tree barks and rotten fruits. In the end, the worms complete the digestion and metabolism process and excrete castings, which in turn mix with the soil and provide necessary and essential nutrients to be used by the trees. Worms even do more than that. Their burrowing action helps facilitate further aeration and transport nutrients from the topsoil down to the subsoil. The result, trees and crops in plantations grow healthier and more productive, producing more leaves and fruits that eventually get back to the soil to be consumed by the future generations of earthworms.
However, in plantations, existence of earthworms is always jeopardized. There are elements and factors that provide risks to worms like the existence of birds, insects and other animals that may prey on the crawling creatures. Aside from that, occasional drought or drying of the soil especially during summers can also be a problem.
Thus, modern plantations are now starting to invest in vermiculture worms, which are available in the market in bulk. Vermiculture worms are artificially raised in made-up ideal environments that are conducive to better and faster reproduction of worms. Such worms are sold so that they could be transferred and left out to the soil in plantations. These ways, the volume of earthworms in such areas are significantly bolstered. It is not surprising that biodynamic farming is very useful even in great scales and proportions of land involved.
Plantations get more productive when applied with organic and natural soil fertilizing methods. It is just about the right time to be safer and more effective at the same time.
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