Monday, August 10 at 9:30 a.m., Dr. Christine Jones, arrived at Larry and Rosemary Wegner’s farm to discuss management techniques that increase levels of soil biological activity, improving nutrient status, moisture-holding capacity,and productivity.
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Jones is recognised worldwide for her soil and health advocacy and understanding of grassland function.
She stated at the convention, “Agriculture is mostly about food, but there’s something fundamentally wrong.”
Jones explained that you have to eat two times as much meat, three times as much fruit, and four to five times as much vegetables to get the same minerals available in those same foods in 1940.
She went on to explain that researchers are at a loss to explain why protein levels in grain are falling when the rate of nitrogen application has increased several-fold over recent decades and why levels of calcium and iron have declined significantly in food when these minerals are abundant in most soils.
After an enlightening interactive barn session (classroom session) with Jones, the group of about 30 people enjoyed a lunch at the Wegner farm.
The lunch was followed by a high stock density grazing tour. Larry Wegner explained his rotational grazing plan, and the group learned about the value of ground cover. Rotational grazing is the process whereby livestock are strategically moved to fresh paddocks, or partitioned pasture areas, to allow vegetation in previously grazed pastures to regenerate.
The beautiful sunny day came to a close after touring different paddocks at Larry Wagner’s.