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  • Benny Thompson

    January 10, 2023 at 12:59 pm

    I’m glad it’s helpful for you, Jaclyn! I feel I should say again that I have no experience in your particular scenario, I’m only applying principals I’ve learned in my alkaline and sodic environment (San Diego, opposite of your environment) in a sorta inverse way. I’m hoping that if I’m dispensing bad ideas, that somebody is going to correct me.


    Yes, kinda. The microbiome is everywhere. “It’s an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us and penetrates us; it binds the galaxy together.” –Obi-Wan-Kenobi. The microbiome is in the jetstream, in the clouds, on the neighboring leaves, in the water, in the soil, in your gut, in the fauna’s gut…everywhere. And each macro-organism (human, tree, grape vine, cloud, etc) is effectively a different galaxy of microorganisms. We are constantly cross-pollinating our galaxies, but quickly with adjacent organisms and slowly with distant organism. You and your family’s guts, are exchanging microbiome, quickly (daily). Your exchanging microbiome with people in your town more slowly(yearly). Your exchanging microbiome with folks in California even more slowly (well most folks in US are eating California produce, so maybe not that slowly…this is how we get people to think like us, through the gut).

    So, sure, probably a lot of the microbiome you want to bring into dominance is currently dormant/not-dominant. But I would guess there’s countless species that don’t exist at all on your plot, but do exist on mature, well-managed vineyards in your region.

    I think the question is: how quickly do you want the new culture to move in, become dominant and healthy. I’m guessing the answer is: As quickly as possible.

    I don’t think hoping that the old culture contains the quantity and quality of diversity you need in the new culture is a safe assumption for quick cultural shift.

    I think I would slam the plot with a lot of calcium carbonate. Till it deep. There, you’ve destroyed most of the microbiome. Put in a cover crop/understory crop. G<font color=”rgba(0, 0, 0, 0)” face=”inherit”>o to a healthy mature organic vineyard in your region, see if they’ll give you compost from their own pile. (Or ask them if you can pull up a bunch of their weeds (with roots) and take a bunch of their trimmings/leaves from their vines. Create your own compost). Make a compost tea from the compost that comes from a healthy mature organic vineyard. </font>Inoculate<font color=”rgba(0, 0, 0, 0)” face=”inherit”> your land. Plant your grapes. Make another tea again in a week. Do it again in a month, and then monthly. I would bet this would be the most accelerated way to establish a mature microbiome.</font>

    I would also make a “fresh root tea”. I’ve never heard of anyone doing this, so I don’t know if this is just my own legend. But it seems to work for me. Dig up roots of healthy plants from a neighboring similar culture, roots of a healthy grape vine. Put them freshly in pH neutral water. Mix a little. Filter. Inoculate your soil with it.