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Building soil for Nutrient Dense Foods

 
Posts: 280
Location: Philippines
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Dr Redhawk, Have you experimented with adding sea water to soil. Sea water is a vast deposit of nutrients wash off from the lands and is free. If not how does a newbie like me go about soil experiments, what equipment implements do I need? I really wanted to experiment on this.
 
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Location: Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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Yes I have done extensive testing with sea water (made from Sea-90 Sea Salt), This is one of the best and easiest methods to put missing minerals into our garden soils.
On the land we can find 72 to 75 minerals, but in sea water there are 97 minerals, some of which are not found anywhere on land masses.
These missing minerals are very much key to human health, so without using sea salt to add those missing minerals, humans can not be as healthy as is possible.
Since the addition of sea salt seems to be counter intuitive for most people, many experiments have been done and re done with the results showing that you can add a fairly large amount of sea water (about 35L per sq. m) monthly and not increase the salinity of the soil significantly.
this is in part because the addition of the missing minerals create a great nutrient boost to the microorganisms and seems to reduce the numbers of the harmful microorganisms.  
In some of my posts, I mention my own use of Sea-90 sea salt as a way to increase the mineral content of my soil and the flavonoid profiles of my fruit trees and vegetables.

Addendum: any time I talk about sea salt I am meaning non-purified sea salt, that is, salt as it is right from the evaporation pools, before they process it to remove the minerals viewed by the producers as contaminates.
 
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Diversify your crops and rotate your crops. What you don't eat, till back into the soil.

For our family it's a matter of whether are we trying to feed ourselves and trade with few neighbors or are we trying to feed the world.

If it's just us and neighbors to trade with growing a wide range of crops and flowers that are rotated or at least rotated via what they produce in compost for our soil we will sustain.

Soil truly is the most important part, without it the bee's have no flowers, our crops would have no girth and yield and the livestock would have no true grasses to graze. I feel bad when I see beginners mistake "dirt" for soil but it's hard if you don't know. Here the box store are allowed to sell bags labeled "top soil" when it's really just construction debris. You'll find more broken glass than you will nutrients.

As for sea water or salt, it's great for sauerkraut and ferments but plants in vegetive state don't particularly like salt. Seaweeds, kelps, sure but sea water?? News to us, I'd save that for the ferments.
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Location: Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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Jason, extensive testing has been done with sea water for growing crops, The research was started and completed by Maynard Murray MD, a research biochemist.
Further testing was done by William Albrecht PhD, his finding backed up Dr. Murray's findings.
All the results show that sea water doesn't harm the plants, rather the opposite happens, the minerals nourish both the plants and the microbiome and no salinity build up is found.

Dr. Murray ended up founding Sea Energy Agriculture a company that continues work in the agriculture field.

Land may have up to 75 minerals, sea water has 97 known minerals, which many of are required for our own body health, these necessary minerals are not found in the minerals of land.
That means if you want maximum nutrition from foods, those minerals only found in sea water have to somehow find their way into your soil (the bacteria of soil love to have those missing minerals available to them too.
Since you can put a fairly large amount of these minerals into your soil by either using a raw seawater evaporated salt or by using that salt to create seawater and put that on your soil without any salinity build up, doesn't it make sense to do that if you want the best nutrition from your home grown foods?

So now you know.
 
Jason Ely
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Bryant RedHawk wrote:
So now you know.



Now I know of the research, I will test it out this season in a small area and might be amazed, I have faith in science. It sounds crazy because highway crews can't use salt on the roads if there are any farms nearby, they can only use sand during snow storms. I was told salt never washes away it just accumulates. I also heard that after certain wars enemies would salt each others farmlands so that nothing would grow. Both instances are probably thousands of times the concentration of just using a little sea water. Wish I didn't move an hour away from the ocean now, would have been a lot easier to test this.

Are there not companies now adding things that would help provide these minerals, like seaweed, kelp, spirulina, chlorella? If I grow one season of food crops and also my wife's rows of flowers and we manage to establish these missing minerals will they now be found in next years compost? Last question, wasn't the entire earth under sea water at one point? Where did all those extra minerals go? All serious comments and questions, there is nothing I like more than healthier plants especially food crops.

Edit: I am a scatterbrain, so I can just make my own using real sea salt? Like Redmond or a quality brand of Himalayan? I use both in my veggie ferments. I was told to avoid evaporated ones because lead is showing up in some batches but that could be false rumors. I do have plenty of Redmond and Himalayan though.
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Jason, the salt you are referring to is NACL, That's what road crews generally use to melt snow and ice, it is what we use on our dinner tables.

Sea salts are very different in composition, If sea salt is pure white it has been stripped of all the minerals so it will taste like Morton's table salt, that isn't what I am referring to using at all.
Himalayan salt is an ancient sea salt that is pink many un-purified sea salts are shades of grays and greens, which indicates that they are not purified to the point of no flavor like most table salt. (the "flavor" of table salt is actually only an intensification not an actual flavor or it would taste metallic like sodium metal)

NACL does indeed cause harm to soils, that's because all that is there is sodium and chlorine for minerals.
If you were to pour table salt on soil, you would indeed do great harm to the microbiome that makes dirt soil, and this has been done by armies as you mention.

The sea salt I use (brand name sea-90) has 94 to 97 minerals with only a tiny portion (.01%concentrated via evaporation) being NACL.

It is a matter of what salt type as to how it effects soils as well as how large the concentration is that is used.
Sea water is only about 3.5% salts, almost none is sodium chloride (.001% usually) the rest of the salts are other minerals.

Most people equate salt to mean NACL, it is what we grow up using and calling salt.
In the chemistry world there are many different salts, with only one being NACL and chlorine is only one of the many elements that can form salts (i.e. not all salts are chlorides).

Sea weeds, and algaes like spirulina and chlorella have some extra minerals but only those that they need to grow healthy themselves.
So while using these products as soil amendments does help with a broader nutrient spectrum in your soil, it will still be missing some of the minerals contained in seawater. (it can be thought of as just outside the X inside the bullseye of the target)
Yes you can make your own "sea water" by dissolving Redmond and or Himalayan salts in water. I make a saturated solution then dilute that because it is easier to make sure of the dilution that way.

Actually no the whole planet was not under water all at the same time. The planet was all rock then water formed and covered parts of the surface of the planet once it began to cool.

We know now that many of the current minerals didn't exist until life began on earth, we owe many of our minerals existence to bacteria using enzymes to form new minerals from then existing ones.
 
Jason Ely
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Thank you for the detailed reply, made me want to go back to school.

Before I even got home from work to read your reply I realized how clearly right you are just based on my experience growing up near the ocean. I lived on peninsula 5 houses in from the beach. At least every couple of years a bad storm would come through and the whole town would be waist deep in ocean water. That town was where I had my first garden and my parents never used fertilizer but we always had amazing yields. The only thing we did was rotated the crops and use our own compost. I never knew that we were benefiting from said floods.

Speaking of salts other than NACL what is your opinion on Magnesium Sulfate? I used to just apply it as a spray foliage booster but some are saying to use it for germination and soil amendments?

 
Bryant RedHawk
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Location: Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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Epsom Salts (magnesium sulfate) is really good for plants when used in moderation, it boosts root strength and it has little effect on the soil's pH when used as a spring time "wake up" provision.
If you grow blueberries it can be used to make pH adjustments since the sulfate acidifies the soil, a half cup spread around a blueberry plant will make up to a .2 lowering of the pH, so if you are not quite at the 5.6 pH these plants seem to do best in, you can calculate how much to add around a plant in the spring.
When you use Magnesium sulfate as a folar feed, do be careful since it tends to crystalize once mixed with water and allowed to evaporate down, that can possibly clog the stoma of the leaves and suffocate them. (I am not a proponent of folar feeding because of possible damage to the leaf stoma)
 
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I can't wait to help with this book. One like it is very long overdue. Thank you for putting forth the effort to write Dr Redhawk. Keep posting and I'll do what I can to suggest edits. Best intentions, Huxley
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Amjad Khan wrote:Mr. Redhawk and all, I have a question about the three sisters and I hope this is a good place to ask it, as you've mentioned the growing style in the main post. "They even planted in the Three Sisters style, where each plant supported others that were planted as neighbors."

Is the nitrogen from the bean root bacteria available to the companion plants while that bean plant is alive, or does the bean plant need to die, and the root nodules need to decompose, to make the nitrogen available to the neighbours?

Thank you,
Imran



It has come to light very recently (I just concluded this series of experiments on 8/6/2019) that when mycorrhizae are present in and around the roots of the nitrogen fixing plants, the rhizobacteria that live in the root nodes of these N fixing plants, can be shared by traversing the fungal network that results from the interaction of mycorrhizae, rhizobacteria and their responses to the chemical and electrical signals put out by other plant species. So, before this new research we thought that the N fixing plant needed to die prior to the fixed nitrogen becoming available for other plants. We now know that the previous "given" is not so accurate, if mycorrhizae are present in the soil and thus in and around the roots of both N fixer and other plant species, N can be shared because of the properties of the mycorrhizae and the responses to the exudates and bio electrical signals interacting and causing rhizobacteria to release fixed nitrogen (ammoniates) to the outside via the endomycorrhizae which transports the ammoniates to the extomycorrhizae and outward through the rest of the fungal network in the soil.  This means that everything we plant should be given the opportunity to have mycorrhizae in and around the roots so that the web of life can function at better capacity and benefit all plants we grow.

Redhawk
 
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