Down the Worm Hole

First Year Success with Carbon-Smart Farming

JR Bollinger’s Story

After Thanksgiving, I sat down with Missouri bootheel farmer, JR Bollinger, for an interview on his experiences in 2015 growing corn, soybeans and milo by principles and practices of Carbon-Smart Farming.  In his first year of full commitment to Biological Agriculture, JR cut conventional fertilizers 50% and applied blends of biocarbons, minerals and microbes.  After Easter, I was fortunate to enjoy another afternoon with JR learning worm calling.“In 2012, I first dabbled in biological farming on a reclaimed coal mine.  A gentleman with microbial products first tickled my brain about dead soil.  He challenged me to find an earthworm on this farm.  So, I went looking, and…  None.  I noticed there wasn’t a lot of life.  Soil looked like moondust, vacant of life.”

Observant, thoughtful, JR questioned why soils were so lifeless.  “Because of the kind of person I am, I started digging in, and wow!  I’m fortunate to live in a time when I can dig as far as I want.  Why is this?  Why is that?  So many different layers of life.

“I tinkered with mixes under gro-lites in my basement to see what different products do.  In test pots, I saw effects and benefits.  You can say I went down the worm hole.”

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