A Few "How I Really Feels..." (w/ Video)
A couple good “How I Really Feel” about no-till, or no-dig, videos came out over the last couple of weeks. Not only are these great videos, they represent two parts of the “methods and practices” conversation around to till or not to till, a conversation that can quickly become side-tracked if we don’t check ourselves.
First, we have podcast guest Richard Perkins giving an updated overview of his no-dig garden at Ridgedale Permaculture. Though he can be a little I-don’t-see-why-the-hell-anyone-would-want-to-grow-otherwise about no-dig, it’s important to remember Perkins comes from a diverse background of experience and research, and is primarily results oriented. Part one of the no-till conversation is that it must be demonstrably true that these practices work. It’s a waste of time to be talking about reducing or eliminating tillage if it isn’t serving the farmer, as well as the farm. It’s important to note he doesn’t so much make a personal case AGAINST tillage, but rather a conceptual case FOR no-dig. We’ll get to why I really feel that’s important in a minute…
Second, Farmer Jesse expresses how he really feels about no-till. Not only do we need to be able to let the results speak for themselves, but also we need to be honest with ourselves in the process. There is still a lot of work to be done on small-scale no-till, but it isn’t the silver bullet to ecological or regenerative farming. It’s just one aspect we chose to explore at-depth.
There have been a rise in the number of “Why I Till” videos from farmers justifying themselves in defense of this movement. Let us be on record, tillage should absolutely be a tool in the farmers toolbox to use when necessary, we simply believe it shouldn’t be a given. However, in order for the conversation to move forward, instead of devolving into us-vs-them, we should be giving every small-scale grower, whether they till or not, the benefit of a doubt. I honestly haven’t met a farmer yet that doesn’t want to leave their land better than how they found it. Instead of “I don’t agree with what you’re doing,” how about, “I may have found another way.”
That’s how I really feel about our work here at No-Till Growers. #nodogma