Fine Tuning Questions

pchid(Zone 6)June 3, 2014

I have been following the Organic Lawn Care recommendations/suggestions for two years and I am starting to understand but still learning.

First, I live in central Ohio and would like to see if anyone else who is interested in or currently practicing organic lawn care would like to start meeting. If so please contact me through this website and I will forward my contact information.

I can't find CGM or SBM in my area that is from non-GMO corn or soy beans. If I use CGM from GMO corn and knowing what they have done to the corn what am I doing to the soil food web, aren't I killing/hurting the microorganisms in the soil? Same question with SBM. Can anyone provide the name of a specific brand of non-GMO CGM or SBM, especially those from central Ohio.

What is the recommended application rate for ACT per 1,000sf of lawn?

What is the recommended application rate for dried molasses per 1,000 sf of lawn?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Virtually impossible at this point. 88% of Corn and 94% of SBM in the US were contaminated with GMO by 2011. Even farmers do not know if there seed has been contaminated. I'd recommend the documentary David vs. Monsanto if you are interested in seeing how easy it is for crops to be contaminated. Monsanto loves it too, because they have the right to sue the small farmer for copyright/patent infringement even if their seed blows onto your farm!

I do the best I can, but if I take SBM and Corn products off the organic menu due to GMO worries, I might as well not have a lawn...

ACT can be sprayed at as high of concentrations as you like. I usually just hook it up to a siphon on the hose and spray it around, no real focus on application rate. Sometimes I will even just spray direct concentrate in problem areas.

I usually add the Molasses to my ACT and use the liquid form. No experience with dried molasses

Here is a link that might be useful: Wholefoods - GMO percentages

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 3:46PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Using the term Genetic Modification for those Genetically Engineered plants is one reason why people do not understand the problem. The Better Boy tomato is a
Genetic Modification (F-1 Hybrid) of Big Boy. Genetic Modification of plants has been going on for eons and is why we have much of the food we have.
But inserting a gene that will never, ever, enter a plant through normal pollination processes is not Genetic Modification although it is Genetic Engineering. If the corn that makes up the Corn Gluten Meal was modified to combat the corn earworm it has the gene that allows it to make the Bacillus thuringiensis bacterium and that will not do any harm to your soil, since that bacterium may be in your soil. If the corn has been modified to withstand onslaughts of glyphosate there may be some harm, but we do not know since no research on that has been done.
Activated Compost Tea may help the soil if there is ample amounts of organic matter in the soil and the Soil Food Web has not fully developed yet, but if the soil does not have much OM the ACT may not do much since the bacteria you are spraying need that OM to live on in the soil.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2014 at 7:24AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

kimmsr, thanks for spelling out Activated Compost Tea (ACT) once in your message. I'm new at organic lawn care and haven't learned the acronyms yet. Of course, I can google them, but sometimes it gets a little complex and time-consuming.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2014 at 3:47PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

While some might not consider it strictly organic, I toss around GMO and don't worry about it. Mostly because, as noted, finding non-GMO is practically impossible.

Fortunately, the bacteria, fungi, and little bugs don't seem to notice or care. Their digestive systems look like they have little trouble ripping apart anything. Nine years now of GMO soybean and corn has resulted in a nice lawn (see photos on my blog listed in the link URL if you want) and gardens.

Also as noted, there's no real limit to ACT. However, it's not really much of a feeding for your lawn and gardens, but it's great at rebalancing bacterial and fungal balances if those are off. I've actually never bothered.

I have sprayed molasses at 4 ounces per thousand square feet or so, which is sufficient to kick-start the bacteria. If I were using dry, I'd probably go 2 to 3 pounds per thousand square feet tops to avoid depleting oxygen in the middle soil layers.

Here is a link that might be useful: Lawn/Garden photos on my blog

    Bookmark   June 29, 2014 at 12:32AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Whether Genetically Engineered Organisms adversely affect us or our environment is unknown since there has been no research to find that out except "you have been exposed to them for 40 years now and no one has grown strange appendages, yet". We do not know what these things will do, although some research has indicted they are not good for us or our planet. One of the reasons why the European Union has severely restricted their use.
Activated Compost tea, ACT, does not feed plants, although it does supply the bacteria and fungi that will convert organic matter in the soil into nutrients that plants can use, if there is adequate amounts of OM in the soil. Spraying ACT onto soils lacking adequate levels of OM will do nothing to fix that problem.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2014 at 7:37AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I tend to be evidence inclined in this particular instance. I can observe no problem using them, so unless a study arises telling us that the bacteria can't handle them, it's pretty obvious they can. Bacteria are pretty good.

That having been said, if there were non-GMO versions available, I'd eat those. Due to cross-pollination, they aren't.

But if the GMO were cheaper in the masses necessary to feed 12,000 square feet...I'd probably keep using GMO to feed the lawn and gardens. Bacterial and fungal digestive systems have little resemblance to mine.

Are the plants themselves bad for pollinators and the land they sit on? Sure. Worse than a synthetic fertilizer plant? ...well, maybe, maybe not.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2014 at 3:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

A true organic grower would say we need to use the precautionary principle before loosing any thing such as these Genetically Engineered products on us. Why does the European Union have such strict rules and regulations concerning these GEO's?

    Bookmark   June 30, 2014 at 7:23AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

No True Scotsman doesn't work well with me.

Considering that every crossbreed (even sometimes between species) is a genetic modification, as is every generation just within a freely-pollinated species, we've been genetically modifying species for thousands of years.

Oddball genes can be inserted from viruses, carried between species. It happens occasionally.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2014 at 2:10PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I am not talking about plants that have been genetically modified, the hybrids that are out there.
I am talking about plants that have been Genetically Engineered and have had genes inserted that would never have gotten there except in a lab.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2014 at 6:41AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

See viral gene transfer; there's no such thing as a gene that couldn't get in there except in a lab. It's rare, but does happen.

To be an issue, you'd further have to show that the resulting protein or enzyme produced by that gene is not digestible by the bacteria, fungi, etc. in the soil. Good luck with that.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2014 at 12:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Please don't confuse me with the facts.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2014 at 1:47PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

>>Please don't confuse me with the facts.


    Bookmark   July 1, 2014 at 3:30PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

So the Bacillus thuringiensis bacterium that has been in the soil for a millennium and has been sprayed on plants for a number of years now would have made its way into plants without being inserted in a lab, someday? The man made gene that makes plants immune to glyphosate would also have gotten into the genetic structure all by itself? That gene is making its way into the "weeds" the glyphosate is supposed to control is transferring to those "weeds".

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 11:12AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Quite possibly, given time and selection pressure. Plus the random event of a gene transfer via viral infection.

In the case of a "man made" gene, when natural we just call it a "mutation."

Bacteria gene transfer often and freely. Eukaryota do it far less often and usually only with viral assistance (although there are exceptions, such as your genes to produce a nuclear wall).

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 4:03PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
High % OM & Compaction/Hydrotropic
My front & back lawn have been 100% organic for...
Is It to Late in the to Apply Organic Fertilizers in Zone 5b
The condition of my lawn: The lawn is thick, but lacks...
Where do you buy your Tall Fescue seed?
I'm in Sacramento and looking to overseed our tall...
Thanks for the Great Looking Lawn! :D
Just wanted to say thanks to this group for the advice...
Liquid soil conditioners
Two particular companies have websites that sell liquid...
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™