For all whose livelihood is tied to lovingly working with the land, winter is a welcome time to pause and reflect. Looking back, as well as forward to Spring, I find myself constantly evaluating and defining the Organic Gardener’s Pantry’s mission in a changing world.

In helping others adopt organic gardening ideas, practices, and products, I’ve been observing an encouraging shift from the fringe towards the mainstream — slowly but surely.

Cases in point:

• Just a few years ago we learned how to even pronounce mycorrhizal fungi (MY-co-RYE-zal); nowadays these fungi are regularly utilized by large-scale potting soil producers and in more and more plant nurseries

• Probiotics (EM) and biostimulants like humic acids have become part of the conversation in both turf grass management and container gardening

• Bio-Sequestration, the capacity of healthy soil/plant ecosystems to draw down carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and store it long-term in solid form, is being recognized as an element of climate change mitigation

• Soil health is making news headlines in the context of global food security

• The emerging Regenerative Agriculture movement embraces many organic and permaculture principles

• Municipalities such as Victoria encourage urban agriculture and make seedlings, compost and mulch materials available for free

• A growing number of businesses offer services and products supporting healthy soil ecology – which is great! I cannot possibly do it all myself 😉

• And educational opportunities are more plentiful than ever! Besides my all-time favourite, Gaia College, on the local level, check out Victoria’s Compost Education Centre (thanks Kayla) and the Horticulture Centre of the Pacific.

• On the North American level, I cannot say enough good things about Acres USA who, besides publishing Phil’s book (amongst many others), also present an excellent monthly magazine, organize conferences, send out newsletters, hold webinars, and generally provide a wealth of timely information on all things eco-agriculture.

• Finally, enjoy this fun and fascinating clip on the Chinampas of Mexico City — thank you, Susan 😉

How exciting to find ourselves at a point in time when traditional, pre-industrial, and indigenous concepts of land stewardship meet modern science, producing insights to back up and explain what works, and why.

It gives me goosebumps of joy!

Did you learn something deliciously organic recently and want to share it? Send it my way for next month’s blog!