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Looking after our soil in our gardens

  • by JW

“Soil is the most biodiverse place in the Sid Valley.”

“Soil can sequester much more carbon and for far longer. Especially if it is left to its own devices.”


There’s more and more understanding of how looking after the soil in our fields and meadows is a good thing on many levels:

Farming @ COP26 – Vision Group for Sidmouth

Looking after our soil – Vision Group for Sidmouth

The role of carbon on the farm – Vision Group for Sidmouth

No-till farming – Vision Group for Sidmouth

There is also much more understanding of how this thinking can be applied to where most of us can have a direct impact – our gardens.

On the Sid Valley Biodiversity Group’s website, Stefan Drew asks and answers a rather fundamental question:

Where’s The Most Biodiverse Place In The Sid Valley?

Soils have the ability to sequester huge quantities of carbon. Far more than trees, which are often considered as a carbon sequestration quick fix. It’s not that trees don’t sequester carbon, they do, but soil can sequester much more and for far longer. Especially if it is left to its own devices.
So where field hedges can be left in situ, or reinstated, and where cultivations can be reduced or stopped, carbon storage increases. It’s one of the reasons that No Dig gardening is taking off and why an increasing number of farmers are going down the Regenerative Agriculture route. With the government having trialled and now expanding sustainable farming incentives, it looks like this could be one of our favoured carbon capture methods.
It’s not just the big landowners that can get involved with this form of carbon capture. Though most gardens are relatively small, there are over 400,000 hectares of garden in the UK. And if we all stopped digging just a small area of our garden, the amount of extra carbon captured over the next decades would be huge!

Soil, Biodiversity and Carbon Sequestration – Sid Valley Biodiversity Group

This piece has also just appeared in the Herald:

Life-giving soil is the most biodiverse place in Sidmouth | Sidmouth Herald

With some response on social media:

UK Garden Flowers, Trees, Shrubs & More | Today’s post is something I wrote for our local newspaper and was repeated on the local biodiversity website | Facebook

And on his website, Stefan considers hundreds of FAQs on the soil in the garden:

Soil FAQs – Bite Sized Gardening