Why do a nematode extraction? Diversity assessment:To figure out what nematode diversity is in the soil or compost.Within the first 24-48h the free living, free swimming nematodes will be extracted. Root feeding nematodes are bound to the root environment, move much shorter distance and won’t generally cover the distances within this early time span.Keep theContinue reading “Nematode extractions”
Finding about tiny worms, similar to earthworms in some behaviours and effects, but in different niches
First impressions of Peter McCoy’s in-depth introduction to the world of fungi
Making compost is a bit like making cake – a cup is a good measure, and we need to get the mix of ingredients right. If it goes well, is smells good, and is delicious (OK, this may be stretching the metaphor too far…)
Do you ever get soil samples and have no idea what the plants were like, what health concerns there might be, what the growing conditions would have been?
What can we glean from just a soil sample and the soil food web in it?
What questions does this pose, and can we judge from the soil alone which plants grew best?
This year we have fewer autumn colours as so many drought-stressed trees in a bid for survival economised on their water use by dropping their leaves early without dressing themselves in the yellows, oranges and reds.But now, here in the UK, those with deep roots are putting on an end-of-season display, and we have hadContinue reading “Spore printing for mushroom identification”
For several weeks I wondered: What is it that I am seeing here?There were lots of little off-shoots of the single strands of mycelium, at fairly regular intervals. Someone had suggested the fungus started branching off in search for food, but this did not fit the pattern I saw. Branching fungal strands, hyphae, maintain theirContinue reading “A glimpse at the sex lives of fungi”
Should I take Dr. Elaine’s™ Soil Food Web Foundation Courses?
Well, that’s a question only you can answer. I can speak to:
Would I take the Dr. Elaine’s™ Soil Food Web Foundation Courses again?
If you want the short answer, yes, I would.
If you want to know a bit more critical detail, read on!
Compost Container I’ve used a number of composting techniques over the years, some typical garden cone composters, I tried a hotbin, and until recently I used 2 pallet compost bays, approx. 1.5m x 1.5m x 1.5m. However, I found these a bit too difficult to keep equally moist, and they were also not very wellContinue reading “Composting Equipment”
All the equipment here is what I use or have heard other students comment favourably on. Any student of the soil food web school will receive recommendations for equipment. Trouble is – these are focussed on the US, so here is what I and a couple of others found useful in a European context, particularlyContinue reading “Microscopy Equipment”