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Michael Phillips shares green man ways to grow healthy through biological alchemy.
How Fungi and Plants Work Together
Introduction: Fungal Consciousness
This much abridged version of the introduction will help you better understand the core structure of Mycorrhizal Planet:
We start off with a requisite shot of science to launch a fuller understanding of mycorrhizal fungi and healthy plant metabolism. Chapter 1 introduces the relevant fungal concepts upon which practical application will follow. Knowing about species adaptability, propagules, and nutrient transfer mechanisms makes us better earth stewards, frankly. The lure of the "fungus-root" comes into its own once we appreciate it's not about green plants alone. Chapter 2 brings in aspects of plant physiology and organic chemistry to get at the heart of phytochemical progression. Sounds daunting, perhaps, but know this has been finely tuned to help you better understand the natural world. All starts to click as growers recognize why investing in health is far preferable to dealing with the myriad of problems that arise as a result of mistreating soil life. I double dog dare ya to embrace holistic means in growing food for your family and community . . . as of course you will after taking in this wholesome plant conversation. Working with resistance metabolites and fungal allies beats toxic thinking hands down.
That front-end dive into science allows us to further explore symbiosis benefits as we move along to consider the wider ecosystem. Chapter 3 explores how entire plant communities are linked by far-reaching mycorrhizal networks in an underground economy. The language of trade helps in understanding how deals get done. Profound intelligence exists in natural systems, so prepare to be awed. And then prepare to not disturb the impeccable! Chapter 4 shares ways that we as growers can specifically favor the fungal dynamic and thereby create good soil tilth. Soil aggregates are the direct result of respecting the primary role of fungi in what might best be thought of as biologically induced alchemy. Prepare to get down and dirty in chapter 5 when it comes to inoculum nuance and traditional techniques to further the fungal cause. Pay particular attention to the "carbon pathways" that in truth are our one saving grace in these tenuous times.
The flail mower attachment for the
BCS walking tractor quickly
converts a stand of winter rye and
hairy vetch to fine mulch without
disturbing root systems.
Weaving an integrated tapestry of health on land we care about comes through actual doing. Chapter 6 finds us outside and raring to get to work. Thinking fungally puts the right framework on how to garden, design landscapes, and grow tree fruit. Fostering fungal precepts makes for more resilient forests and farms. Those who love nuance as much as I do will enjoy the fungal riffs to be underscored in every deed.
Inspiration for the fungal gourmet will be found in chapter 7. Finding the edible among mycorrhizal mushrooms in the wild is a passion unto itself. Lastly, all comes round in chapter 8 with a big-picture view of what a world versed in carbon flow might look like. Our species has some daunting choices to make, but in the end it will come down to each one of us finding joy in fungal ways. Transformation happens when we take the initiative to do better by soils everywhere. The fungi will take it from there.
This notion that "plant toes being tickled by fungi" bestows life to our dear planet -- and so many two-leggeds don't even have a clue -- means the time has come to tell the full story about mycorrhizal fungi.
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