In order to achieve our goal of sustainability, Honeywood has committed itself to reducing its off-farm fossil fuel inputs as much as possible. This means incorporating farming techniques and systems that allow for self sustained nutrient cycling and fertility building. We accomplish this by
We compost animal manures and garden waste extensively. We either apply this compost directly to our beds are use it to brew compost teas which we apply to our soil and plants as a spray. Good compost is the ultimate fertilizer.
All garden beds not being utilized for market production are planted with a cover crop (or green manure) to protect the soil from erosion, fix precious nitrogen, scavenge excess nutrients and add valuable organic matter to the soil when incorporated. Various combinations of grasses and legumes are used throughout the season to build soil structure and fertility for future crops.
Mulching has proven a very effective way to maintain healthy soils and greatly reduce the need for irrigation. This has been one of the most effective methods of growing vigorous healthy disease free plants. By layering organic matter on the garden beds we provide an ideal environment for soil microbes to thrive. The process of these microbes breaking down the organic matter in the mulch is what feeds the plants the essential nutrients they need to be healthy and strong.