Ever since initially getting into gardening, I have been interested in continuously learning. I want to acquire as much information as possible so that I not only am I knowledgable, but the more I learn, the better I can produce.
When I got older and learned about the soil, we grow our food in I realized it is directly connected to what is in the produce. So I switched from all conventional pesticides and fertilizers to organic. I have been growing organically for over a decade, and I thought I had a decent amount of knowledge.
Then one day, a friend on social media asked me Natural farming. When he said it, I automatically assumed he was talking about organic farming. He quickly corrected me. He let me know that they are not precisely the same.
Master Cho is known as the inventor of Korean Natural Farming or KNF movement. This process began around 1966 when he went to study enzymes and microorganisms in Japan before bringing this information back to Korea and applying to agriculture.
Natural farming is a low-cost agriculture model. In this model, you capture indigenous microorganisms and create fertilizers and pesticides from relatively cheap inputs. Things such as potatoes, rice, rainwater, and brown sugar to name a few. Natural farming is about capturing and using these microorganisms and ferments to create healthy living soil through the strengthening of the soil food web. Healthier soil decreases the need for excessive fertilizers or pesticides. Natural farming is about understanding and using nature to grow more considerable amounts of healthier crops. Natural farming helps save money. The inputs are cheaper to produce than purchasing them. Also the created nutrients help relieve the need for costly amendments or compost.
The concept behind Natural Farming just made sense to me. What did people do before big agriculture companies making pesticides and fertilizers, whether organic or not? Gardening, growing, farming at the root should be a more cost-effective and environmentally friendly way of feeding yourself or others. There had to be a way to produce the necessary nutrients needed to produce nutrient-dense food that did not break the bank.
With natural farming, you understand each of the stages of the plant's life and apply different solutions depending on the stage the plant is in vegetative, transitional, or flowering. These solutions contain microorganisms, primary nutrients, secondary nutrients, and enzymes. Different amounts of these solutions are used during the various growth stages.
Well, I have gone all-in on the KNF or natural farming bandwagon. This season I will be attempting to produce all of the necessary nutrients for all of the gardens I am associated with. More importantly I have found something else that I can “ Nerd “ out on when it comes to gardening. I'm excited to see what is down this path.