Restoring The Soil: Second Edition Now Available
Green manure/cover crops (gm/ccs) enrich the soil while providing numerous other benefits such as weed suppression and food for human and/or animal consumption. Understanding their functions, selecting gm/ccs for specific growing conditions, and knowing how to integrate them on small-scale farmsteads can be a daunting process. Roland Bunch's second edition of "Restoring the Soil" helps practitioners and farmers learn about gm/ccs and choose context-appropriate gm/cc systems already in use by farmers.
Part 1 of the book explains benefits and limitations of gm/ccs, common misconceptions, and mistakes made in using them. It discusses how gm/ccs relate to soil improvement, tropical agriculture, and climate-smart practices that sequester carbon and mitigate against drought.
Part 2 guides the reader through a unique, incremental decision-making process for selecting which of 117 gm/cc systems have the most potential for success in their setting.
"Roland Bunch’s book distills for us decades of rich field experience in countries all around the world, where millions of farmers have given practical meaning to the concept of synergy. Farmers are doing this by growing a great number of crops in intelligent and profitable association with a huge variety of green manure/cover crop plants. These marvelous plants enrich the soil at the same time that they enhance crop yields, conserve soil moisture, and save farmers’ labor. Thanks to Bunch’s keen observations, systematic analysis and critical thinking, this agroecologically-based strategy is now accessible to anyone who will read, digest and apply what is in this book. It fills a huge gap in our published knowledge about how to make the most of our land, labor and water for meeting our food needs in sustainable ways."
—Dr. Norman Uphoff
Professor of Government and International Agriculture, Cornell University
Director, Cornell International Institute for Food and Agricultural Development (CIIFAD)
Author of Reasons for Success and other books