Episode 143: How would Nature farm? Can degraded, infertile land be regenerated? Can agriculture become a healing beneficial system that mitigates climate change?
To answer these questions, I speak with farmer Joel Salatin, co-owner of Polyface Farm located in Swoope, Virginia. When the Salatins moved to the farm in 1961, there wasn’t enough soil on the land to hold up a fence post. Over fifty years later, Polyface is an oasis of organic matter and one of the most fertile farms in the US.
How did Joel and his family achieve this remarkable transformation? It began when Joel’s father William, who out of necessity and with very little money, bucked conventional practices and began to observe how Nature farms. Implementing what they saw in natural systems, the Salatin family began their great task of restoring life and fertility to the land.
In this inspiring and uplifting interview, Joel shares the joy of being a visceral participant in healing land, why he believes that good farming should increase the commons, and how we can become beneficial participants in legacy ecology.
Joel talks about the importance of including animals in agriculture, his “Moving, Mobbing, and Mowing Ministry,” how to use herbivores as pruners, and what we can do now to heal the earth.
To learn more about Joel Salatin and Polyface Farm, visit their website at PolyfaceFarms.com.