It only makes sense that the first video we shot for the Nurturing Life Project would be on healthy soil. Healthy soil is directly tied to our Jing (vitality). Plants grown in soil teeming with healthy microorganisms thrive. They pass on this vitality to us in the fruits, vegetables, and grains they produce. Thus, we cannot have health if we do not have healthy soil.
This was particularly important to my mom, Dr. Judith Andrews, and I since we are remodeling an old home with an abandoned yard (read more about the renovations on Judith’s blog). Plants in southwest Florida have to be resilient to weather the onslaught of insects if you don’t want to rely on toxic substances. In our quest to improve the health of our soil and plants, we came across Rachel Singletary of Pine Forest Fruit and Flower Farm. Known as the “Worm Lady”, Rachel uses worm castings to replenish the natural ecosystem of the soil and help her plants thrive without the use of a single chemical or processed fertilizer. Castings work similarly as probiotics do in our own bodies. Rachel explains that while composting is hit and miss in Florida, worm bins are easy to manage in the climate here. This solution is cheap (about $40 to start a bin), environmentally supportive, and effective.
She put our yard on a regimen of monthly application of castings until the plants look visibly healthier.
For more info on Rachel’s worm bins, native plants, or butterfly gardening please see: Florida Native Plant Seeds