Monday, July 25, 2011

Global Rupture?

The pigs are doing a good job roto-tilling a garden bed, their test site.  We're getting a little sweet corn from the field garden, which will be their next project.  Some winter squash seems to be doing all right in that garden, too.  If we put the pigs out there, will they stay inside their electric fence?  We plan to gradually move them around the big garden.  A fence break could badly mess things up.  Hitting a deer is no fun.  Hitting a pig wouldn't be, either.

If the field garden experiment works, then we may move the pigs or their replacements around the field.  Bit by bit we might be able to plant the field with native grasses and animal food, such as oats and barley.  Or blueberries, pumpkins, strawberries, etc.  I don't know about monoculture planting though, a quarter acre or twenty-five.  How big does it have to be before it becomes monoculture?

Reading Silent Spring, including Rachel Carson's account of the use of DDT on elm trees in Michigan and elsewhere, leads me to wonder if, 60 years later, the robins have returned.  Have we learned from that experience or are we doing the same sort of thing with "safe" treatments like Roundup?  There's so much we don't know.  We should be wary of introducing any inventions into our planet's ecosystems.  I'm inclined to apply the grandmother test -- if grandmother wouldn't recognize it, don't eat it, and think ten thousand times before spraying it on plants. 

"Hey, what's it matter?" says Virginia.  "The rapture is coming soon."

She's a kidder.  Too bad many other people aren't.

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