The lawns of Organic Soil Solutions’ customers are beginning to receive their first application of organic soy-based fertilizer. It is great to hear the birds chirping and feel the warm sun. The fertilizer will wake up the soil biology and get the grass off to a quick start.
Arsenate, DDT Compounds and Mercury
A friend dropped off a book the other day, the 1948 USDA yearbook on grass. Some excerpts include, “Most species of earthworms may be controlled by the use of lead arsenate at the rate of 20 pounds to 1,000 square feet.” And that is not because they are pests, but “they might be numerous enough to make the lawn unsightly with their casts.” “Most of the turf insects can be controlled by various DDT compounds” and “Dollar spot may be controlled by the use of mercury or cadmium compounds.” The new kid on the block in 1948, “2,4-D is not harmful to persons or animals, a point to be considered by those that have children or pets that play on the lawn.”
2,4-D and 20% More Pesticides
I’m not sure how many people cared about their lawns in those day, but all these chemicals, except for 2,4-D, have been banned for home use. It seems amazing, however, that the war to combat nature goes on. They use 20% more pesticides on GM herbicide resistant crops than those planted with normal seeds. Farmers with Roundup ready plants are going back to 2,4_D to combat the Roundup resistant super weeds. Now they have a Roundup ready bluegrass. Hospitals are worried about super bugs. It seems these guys are tilting at wind mills in their quest for a perfect man-made environment. I just wish they would take it easy.
Soil Biology Matters
At Organic Soil Solutions we are competing with weeds and pests for the same turf. Our goal is to encourage an environment that favors grass, not annihilate everything else. Us organic folks need the soil biology on our side to break down fertilizers, fend off intruders and improve the soil. We work as a team.
Take Care of Your Lawn
In an organic program, it is important to mow the grass as high as possible and leave the clippings. The only way to get deep roots is provide the plant with plenty of leaf surface to capture sunlight and manufacture food through photosynthesis.
As always, please call (781-937-992) or email (email@example.com) or send us a note with any questions or concerns.
Photo courtesy of Laurel Leaf Farm