NTMG Podcast Season One// Reactions
… and that’s a wrap on season one of the No-Till Market Garden Podcast, folks.
Stepping back from my role in No-Till Growers for a moment, I wanted to share a few thoughts about season one and it’s impact on my farming.
First—foremost—it sent me over the edge. Ever since the Farmer to Farmer episode with Singing Frogs—remember that bombshell?—I suspected there was something I could do to implement no-till on our small farm, but didn’t know where to begin. For one, there were so few places to turn. The No-Till Market Garden Podcast seemed to pick up where that episode left off, providing several access points for transitioning to no-till. At the very least, there was more than one farm out there doing it successfully. Yet, it’s still not prescriptive, which is what I love and hate about it. On the one hand, just tell me what to do, dammit! But so much within no-till depends on the particularities and peculiarities of your place, your farm, using what you have around you, and your personality, even.
Second, t reframed farming as a creative endeavor. There is no book. I mean, there is (thanks Mefferd, offer code NOTILL) and I totally recommend it, but it serves the same function of the podcast. The growing community now has a handful—and a rather large handful at that—of case-studies, farms not “going by the book” but following a few guiding ecological principles and using what is at their disposal (sometimes literally) to make it work. And not without a lot of failure along the way, which is part of the creative process. The path to doing no-till well may begin with doing no-till badly, and we heard time-after-time of farmers following their ideas, instincts, glimpses of potential, failing spectacularly, and—instead of returning to more conventional methods—persevered. It’s reassuring to know, for a fact, I’m going to do it poorly, but that’s the necessary first step.
Last, some say it answered all of their questions, for me it just created more of them, and I’m not convinced we have it figured out just yet. I, myself, feel woefully inadequate with regards to soil biology. Even the experts claim we’ve only begun to understand it, yet it’s the foundation of.. well.. our lives, much less our farms. And what we do not understand, we run the risk of destroying. Yet, after 28 episodes, I’ve personally come to two conclusions: one, the current state of farming in untenable—however, immediately necessary—in the light of what little we do know, and two, the no-till principles may be the best shot we have at a better farming future.
Not that my thoughts hold any particular significance, but yours do. Take a second to send us your reaction to season one and we’ll post some of them next Monday in appreciation of Farmer Jesse’s insane amount of work putting all of this together. It doesn’t have to be long. What did you get out of it? Who do you want to hear on the podcast? What would make it even better?
We’ll still be posting relevant no-till stuff on the blog and Instagram two to three times a week as we farm full-time, implement some of the things we’ve learned, and gear up for season two. Be sure to check back on Monday when tickets to the Frith Farm at Rough Draft Farmstead, our first No-Till Growers event happening in the Fall, go live. And mention/tag us @notillgrowers in all your no-tilling over the next growing season, we may even share your work with the greater no-till community.
Admit it, you can’t wait to hear that theme music come Fall…