Lower annual rainfall amounts and the depletion of ancient underground aquifers as a result of excessive crop irrigation are facts of life for farmers in many drought states of the American Western and Midwest (and more recently, the South). One promising solution is “organic dry land farming.” That was the conclusion of Fred Kirschenmann, PhD, in an interview on the Sharon Kleyne Hour Power of Water, talk radio show of October 8, 2012.
A Professor of Agriculture at Iowa State University, Dr. Kirschenmann also operates a large family farm in North Dakota, dedicated to entirely to dry land wheat farming. According to Kirschenmann, 70% of water in the United States is used for agriculture. Even where water is plentiful, good soil moisture retention, and good microbial soil health, will greatly benefit crop production and quality.
The key to water retention is the soil’s organic content (i.e., microbes and plant and animal waste). Soil with 1% organic material holds 33 pounds of fresh water per cubic yard while soil with 5% organic material holds 195 pounds. On average, agricultural soil in the US contains 2.2% organic material. With good farming methods this could be pushed to 6.5%.
The Sharon Kleyne Hour Power of Water is broadcast live on Mondays, 10 a.m., PST/PDT. The syndicated radio talk show is heard on Voice America/World Talk Radio, Green Talk Network and Apple iTunes. For more information about Sharon Kleyne, Bio Logic Aqua Research and Nature’s Tears® EyeMist® go to http://www.naturestears.com. For a written summary or on-demand podcast of this interview, go to http://www.sharonkleynehour.com/Archive2012/Organic_Dryland_Farming_Water_Solution_Drought_States_Fred_Kirschenmann.php
© 2013 Bio-Logic Aqua Research (172Q). Sharonkleynehour.wordpress.com. All rights reserved.