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Farmer John: Building a garden starts with healthy, living soil

BY J.D. WILSON SIGMA — I call it the garden of eatin’.  I love that fresh food, and I love working – really, playing – in the garden.  It’s rewarding just to stand there observing the bees, butterflies and flowers. Or maybe slipping… Continue Reading

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Farmer John: Healthier, nutritious meals for our local communities now — and for our future selves

BY J.D. WILSON SIGMA — Consider eating a diet of the lab-made stuff seen in the movie The Matrix starring Keanu Reeves. It was a tan mush, and it looked and tasted the same every day, but it did have all the… Continue Reading

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Farmer John: An agriculture economy on our scale

BY J.D. WILSON VIRGINIA BEACH — Pop quiz: Which of the following terms does not fit with the others? GDP, trade wars, tariffs, short-term profit calculations, quarterly reports, soil stewardship, derivatives, the Gaussian copula formula. The what? That last one is real,… Continue Reading

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Farmer John: Benefits of a beloved fowl mean it might just be time for a chicken in every Virginia Beach yard

BY J.D. WILSON VIRGINIA BEACH — Why did the chicken cross the road?  To rule the world, of course.  There are some 20 billion chickens in the world, plus or minus a few. This dwarfs any other bird species. Next in… Continue Reading

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Farmer John: Sustainable farming practices help prevent erosion

“A nation that destroys its soil destroys itself” — Franklin D. Roosevelt “Civilization itself rests upon the soil” — Thomas Jefferson. BY J.D. WILSON SIGMA — Providence Canyon State Park near Lumpkin, Ga., is called Georgia’s Little Grand Canyon. It takes… Continue Reading

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Farmer John: With biochar, looking at past practices for better soil today

BY J.D. WILSON SIGMA — Imagine being in the paradise state, inside a condo on a beautiful day. I was there, in Hawaii, back when I was blond-haired. Now I still have three or four blond hairs left. My dermatologist told… Continue Reading

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Farmer John: Waste not, want not by growing a recycling mindset

BY J.D. WILSON SIGMA — The first law of thermodynamics, also called the law of conservation of energy, says energy cannot be created or destroyed in isolated systems. We can think about this in terms of soil. As I’ve written here… Continue Reading

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Farmer John: Here’s the dirt about soil, a key to sustainable agriculture

BY J.D. WILSON SIGMA — Please don’t call the soil “dirt.” Dirt is what you sweep off the kitchen floor. Soil is a glorious life-filled layer that sustains us. Soil is, as the subtitle of a great book by William Bryant… Continue Reading