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Building Soils for Better Crops
The third edition of SARE’s “Building Soils for Better Crops” by Fred Magdoff and Harold van Es includes effective management strategies to maintain soil organic matter using primarily on-farm, internal resources. The book details how fertility management can accompany appropriate crop and cover crop choices that influence soil structure and soil health, and also how to interpret soil test results for cost-effective soil fertility management.
“Understanding the principles by which native soils function can help farmers develop and maintain productive and profitable soil both now and for future generations. The soil, the environment, and farm condition benefit when the soil’s natural productivity is managed in a sustainable way. Reliance on purchased inputs declines year by year, while land value and income potential increase. Some of the things we spend money on can be done by the natural process itself for little or nothing. Good soil management produces crops and animals that are healthier, less susceptible to disease, and more productive. From ATTRA’s Sustainable Soil Management Soil Systems Guide.