Listerine in Agriculture

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Inspired by Louis Pasteur‘s ideas on microbial infection, the English doctor Joseph Lister demonstrated in 1865 that use of carbolic acid on surgical dressings would significantly reduce rates of post-surgical infection. Lister’s work in turn inspired St. Louis-based doctor Joseph Lawrence to develop an alcohol-based formula for a surgical antiseptic that also included eucalyptol, menthol,

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Why Micronutrients Are So Important

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Let’s talk about micronutrients – copper, magnesium, iron and zinc – that are among the essential elements for building phytochemicals, enzymes, and proteins in plants. They’re also important for our own bodies. Researchers have connected a wide range of human health problems with deficiencies in these minerals. Copper, for example, is essential for hemoglobin to

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Microbes Fuel Agricultural Moonshot

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

I read an interesting article from the Washington Post of few days ago talking about how agricultural practices will have to change given the challenge of feeding 9 billion people by 2050. With global population skyrocketing, plus climate change and shifting diets,  the article posed the problem as a challenge akin to a “moonshot.” The

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Heat Wave Impact and Options

Monday, June 19, 2017

This current heat wave and others to come put a considerable amount of heat stress on various crops. When crops are under stress, they become less efficient in processing nutrients as their metabolism (photosynthesis, respiration, and the synthesis and degradation of organic compounds) slows down. Andaman Ag has some product options to help mitigate heat

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Mitigating Red Blotch with Thyme Guard

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Growers following organic or sustainable practices are always looking for fungicide options that include organic products that don’t trigger the regulations for spray protocols or expose employees to harmful chemicals. In addition, the introduction of organic fungicides, insecticides, bactericides and virucides allows growers much greater flexibility in their application. Organic products introduce new biology to

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Accelerating Soil Recovery

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Last week, our newsletter focused on building soil carbon and its incredible impact on soil and crop health. Interestingly enough, I saw an article dated May 31 in California Today titled “To Fight Climate Change, Heal the Ground.” The article goes on to say, “The climate change fight has focused largely on cutting emissions. But

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Producing Carbon-Rich Soils

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Imagine if someone invented machines that could pull carbon out of the atmosphere — machines that were incredibly inexpensive, autonomous, and solar powered, too. Wouldn’t that be great? Well, we already have these devices — they’re called plants. Unfortunately, plants die, leaving us with the dilemma of how to lock away the carbon in dead plants so

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Improving Soil Health Reduces Material Costs

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Can improved profitability and soil health be connected in an obvious way? Well, the answer is likely no, but it’s still worth real consideration. There are so many factors that go into farming that it’s challenging to place each grower in a single bucket. Each farm has distinctive soil types, topography, weather, production and management

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Foliar Fertilizers Promote Root Exudation

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

When I first starting advocating for the use of foliar fertilizers around 2005, many growers did not share my perspective that building better soils coupled with the use of foliar fertilizers was the most expeditious way to get crop production moving in the right direction. I remember having a meeting with a number of managers

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Optimizing Fruit Set

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

A few weeks go we presented newsletters addressing ways to improve fruit set. Getting a good bloom and fruit set is critical. I’ve always made the analogy that prior to fruit set it’s all about the “mother,” or getting the plant as healthy as possible. After fruit set, it’s all about the “baby,” as plant

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Soil Health and its Payoff

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

It’s challenging to pick up any agricultural publication today and not see at least one article addressing soil biology. There’s clearly a soil movement taking place. As a matter of fact, I was just sent an email for a webinar about soil health improvement where I could earn 1 CCA Soil and Water Management CEU.

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Products With Impact

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Last week I was on the road with Agro Research International, our supplier of Thyme Guard and Nem Guard Gold. Thyme Guard is a non-EPA listed, organic fungicide, insecticide, bactericide and virucide. Nem Guard Gold helps build soil biology while greatly reducing nematode numbers. We met with a number of both organic and conventional growers

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Current Weather Pattern and Fruit Set

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The start of this growing season’s weather pattern has been unpredictable, and the recent overcast, wet and cool weather may result in poor fruit set. Cool temperatures can interfere with the development of pollen and pistil during the flowering process or with the development of the ovule after fertilization. If inadequate weather conditions persist, leaf

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Why Integrate Biological Products?

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

I get a lot of questions from growers about integrating biological products and the cost of organic and sustainable products relative to conventional products. Today, our ability to measure the impact of about everything in agriculture is validating why we need to start to move away from conventional fertilizers and introduce products that begin to

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Building Crop Health For Today And Tomorrow

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

I’ve been traveling around California looking at the various stages of crops emerging from dormancy. There have been some areas that have experienced a considerable amount of rain and the soils remain very damp if not boggy. I hear many growers rejoicing about soil moisture profiles this season relative to what they endured over the

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