In our on-going efforts to achieve best practice, we have been encouraged by the results obtained through using Mt. Sylvia Palagonite (Soil Conditioner). We feel this product has enhanced the water holding capacity of our soil during dry times; it has greatly contributed to the nutrient content of the soil through plant available mineral dusts; and through repeated applications of Palagonite along with composted organic matter and mulch, we contend we have a garden where rich, healthy, living soil predominates. The products of the garden speak for themselves. We think their taste is superior and their health-giving capacities have been augmented. While Jerry Coleby-Williams has told gardeners to "plan for the worst, hope for the best and expect a compromise", with Palagonite- enriched soil, we believe we can be reasonably optimistic given our results to date.
We can never acknowledge that gardening is an exact science as uncontrolled variables are generally present. But thinking processes which are fundamental in scientific enquiry are common to many general purpose cognitive operations that human beings apply in non-scientific domains. Successful gardening and agriculture always demand the acquisition of a knowledge base, the controlled application of certain conditions, problem solving, causal reasoning, the examination of patterns, analysis of results, hypothesis generation and reflective judgment which, in turn, gives rise to further lines of "experimentation".
To date, in our "experimentation", we have applied Palagonite at a rate of approximately half a kilo per square metre twice yearly. Fruit trees receive in addition, a handful in the hole prior to planting. We believe that plants do exceptionally well in decayed magma. But in the ancient soils throughout most of Australia, some critical minerals have leeched out. We think that the application of Palagonite returns the soil to a composition closer to an earlier state in which most of our plants evolved. It follows that higher applications of Palagonite may be beneficial. We are currently testing this idea.
We are pleased to say that we can be included in the growing number of Australian farmers and gardeners who are passionate about the use of organic methods in agriculture.
As committed members of the Gold Coast Organic Growers we aspire to uphold the aims of the organisation-
1. to promote organic sustainable food raising for home gardens and farms;
2. to foster research into improved methods of organic farming and gardening; and
3. to provide information and support to all those interested in the various aspects of organic gardening.