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The Future of Farming – Regenerative Agriculture with Integrity Soils

The Future of Farming – Regenerative Agriculture with Integrity Soils
Nicole from Integrity Soils discusses Regenerative Agriculture with farmers

Beneath the grass lies a complex ecosystem that farmers must pay more attention to.

Regenerative agriculture is taking the world by storm as producers look to optimise nutrients, reduce inputs, build healthier soils and produce clean, nutrient dense foods. The success of Regenerative Agriculture begins through building a foundation to enhance the natural cycles in the soil ecosystem, using proactive practices which address the root causes of problems, versus reacting to symptoms. Integrity Soils, a New Zealand based company is a leader in facilitating this global transformation in food production.  

Your Farm’s Number One Limiting Factor

What is your number one yield limiting factor? ‘Nitrogen’ you’re probably told. That’s actually inaccurate; try this… hold your hand tightly over your nose and mouth for a minute to see what your number one limiting factor is – It’s Air.  

It is just the same for your plants and soil microbes. Without adequate airflow, roots and microbes curl up and die and natural mineral and water cycles breakdown. Compacted and waterlogged soils lose valuable nutrients including N, P and C, and reduce those microbes responsible for providing minerals to your crops. Improving yield starts with a soil that can breathe. Air, and water, moves into soil through the gaps in soil aggregates, the crumbs formed by soil microbes. Just like constructing an apartment building, microbes and earthworms make hallways, stairwells and living spaces. Poor soil structure turns these apartments into a tarmac. This loss of structure stalls the natural nitrogen cycle. The high use of soluble nitrogen creates a vicious cycle. Microbial communities are dramatically altered, reducing organic N and C, and overstimulating bacteria. Humus is lost therefore soil carbon decreases. The loss of carbon creates the conditions for compaction, increased runoff and erosion and limited root growth.  

The Role of Fungi and Bacteria

Fungi to Bacteria (F:B) ratios are important for soil structure and pasture health. The most important of the fungi are the essential mycorrhizal fungi. Plants provide the fungi with its sole source of food (liquid carbon sugars) and the fungus provides the plant with soil-derived nutrients. Mycorrhizas will be damaged or destroyed by soil compaction and disturbance, as well as by the use of certain chemicals. When considering natural nitrogen inputs, farmers most often think of legumes, particularly clover. However, in healthy soils among the most common organisms are the bacteria which fix nitrogen into the soil. These N fixers require air, so compacted soils will have less of these important organisms. Soils are a living, breathing ecosystem; supporting and feeding soil microbes has huge benefits across the entire farm enterprise. Reducing nitrogen can be profitably and sensibly done through enhancing microbiology and soil health. 

Regenerating Your Farm with Integrity Soils 

An Integrity Soils regeneration program is based on observation, ecological principles, regenerative management practices and science. We look to find points of leverage that will give the greatest return on investment in quality, production and performance.  

These leverage points consider the 5 M’s:  

  1. Management – crop and pasture diversity, grazing, production systems, inputs  
  2. Microbes – everything living in the soil, biological applications  
  3. Mindset – identifying limiting factors, asking ‘why’, thinking beyond what we already know  
  4. Minerals – imbalances, Ca:Mg ratio Organic  
  5. Matter – how to build it and create humus  

We provide written comprehensive assessments with observations, actionable steps and reasonings. As a team we have decades of practical experience and know-how in growing a diverse range of crops and livestock. We also provide monitoring services to ensure your soil and crop program is on track.  

For more information on Integrity Soils regenerative agriculture resources, visit Integrity Soils at:

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