Select Page
Increasing Mineral Content of Soil and Growing Nutrient Dense Vegetables
In order to grow the best, most nutrient-dense vegetables I can, I put a great deal of effort into adding a variety of minerals and amendments to the soil. These minerals and amendments come from a variety of sources like Azomite and glacial rock dust, plant-based meals, composts, and farm-raised worm castings fed from farm waste.

6 + 13 =

Minerals and Trace Elements

With modern farming practices of adding basic chemical fertilizers to the soil, many places around the world have been stripped of many trace elements. I am working to create an abundance of these elements to last a lifetime and leave the soil much better than I found it.

AZOMITE® is an OMRI Listed natural product in Utah mined from an ancient volcanic eruption into a seabed and is distinct from any other mineral deposit in the world. The name means A to Z Of MInerals and Trace Elements. This particular rock dust contains over 70 different minerals and trace elements. That goes into growing the most healthy, nutrient-dense foods available.

Glacial Rock Dust – When a Glacier slides down a mountain over hundreds or thousands of years, it grinds up everything in its path and creates glacial moraine from a variety of rock and stone.

Greensand is a mineral high in Potassium, iron, and magnesium. It works great for conditioning heavy clay soils and allows for better water drainage and retention. 

Organics

Compost

Living on the Florida Georgia line my native soil is mostly sand with veins of clay running randomly through it. Because of this lack of organic matter in the soil, I add 3 types of compost to my garden.

Mushroom Compost is added on a regular basis to add both nutrition and organic matter to the garden beds. I use this compost because of the bulk availability in my local area.

Mixed Garden Compost – I also make my own compost from all of the plant waste from the garden. Damaged fruit and vegetables, weeds, and old plants are composted over time and added back to the garden. No Waste!

Vermicompost is the third type of compost I use. I raise 2 types of earthworms to further break down the homemade compost and other organic materials like leaves, vegetable scraps, and cut cover crops.

Plant Based Amendments

In addition to Compost, I also add various plant meals to the soil such as:

  • Alfalfa Meal – Not only is it a balanced “meal” for beneficial microbes, but it also adds the nutrients and enzymes necessary for healthy plant growth.
  • Kelp Meal – Kelp feeds healthy root growth and increases the plants’ resistance to pests and disease, reducing the need for even the organic biological pesticides.
  • Comfrey is something I have planted recently that will be added to the compost. This plant sends roots very deep into the ground “mining” for nutrients and trace minerals bringing them up into the leaves. This plant is chopped and either added directly to the garden or compost.
  • Woodchips – I have loads of arborist chips delivered to mulch walk paths around the garden to help regulate rainfall and provide habitat for beneficial bacteria and fungus to grow. Over time, the woodchips break down and the nutrients are added back to the soil.

The more diversity of nutrition in your soil, the more available in your food!

Animal Based Amendments

These Animal-Based Amendments are added into my homemade compost and not added directly to the garden to ensure they are fully broken down.

Crab Meal – a waste product of the seafood industry, crab meal adds an abundance of slow-release minerals and other nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus, Calcium, and Magnesium to the compost to grow amazing vegetables.

Blood Meal – A wonderful source of Nitrogen, I use blood meal to jump-start the composting process in my compost piles.

Bone Meal – I add bone meal to the compost to balance out the amount of nitrogen added through the Blood meal. 

Why do I go through this?

Feeding the soil a balance of nutrients is just as important as feeding yourself a balanced diet. Healthy soil grows healthy plants that are more resistant to pests, disease, and weather conditions like drought, wind, and excessive rainfall.

Having the healthiest plants possible means that their nutrient density is higher than plants grown on a chemical fertilizer diet. 

The main reason I go through this is that I want to grow the best, most nutrient-dense food that I can. I grow in abundance to have enough to share with other families that also want to eat the best food possible.

Text/SMS – (850) 557-0948
Matt@TheRuralGarden.com