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Worm composting, also known as vermicomposting (VC), utilizes worms to create and enrich soil by way of bioturbation. Abundant research supports the benefits of vermicomposting, such as establishing a natural defense against crop and soil disease and also providing a nutrient rich additive for prolific crop growth.
Researchers from the University of Buenos Aires state, "In the present world-wide-increasing demand of safe food, VC technology turns out to be a valuable tool to satisfy consumers' demand, and simultaneously increase yields"
While the process is time consuming, vermicomposting is well worth the wait. Watch an 8-week time-lapse in just over 5 minutes for an amazing look at the worms at work.
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Ready to begin your own vermicomposting project? Check out the following videos for building a worm compost bins out of 55-gallon plastic barrels or IBC totes.
According to National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), Texas had 178 certified organic farms in 2014, with only 0.07% of total farms in Texas certified organic. In comparison, California showed 2,632 certified organic farms with 3.38% of total farms certified organic.
The gap between consumer demand and the supply of Texas grown organic food is wide and growing. Texas consumers spend over a billion dollars per year on organic food and only a tiny percentage of this is grown within the state. This represents a large missed economic opportunity.
The entire process for organic certification requires 90-120 days. Applicants are encouraged to submit required documentation and fee payment "well in advance of actually needing certification." Additionally, documentation and fee payment should be received by the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) "3 months before the harvest of first organic crop." Refer to the TDAs form GUIDANCE ON SUBMITTING NEW APPLICATIONS TO TDA for more information.
Texas Department of Agriculture Organic Certification Handbook is a great place to start for growers interested in organic certification. The Texas Department of Agriculture website contains complete information for certification from start to finish, including information about funding opportunities such as the National Organic Certification Cost Share Program (NOCCSP). Additionally, the Texas Organic Farmers & Gardeners Association provides information and support for Texas organic growers www.tofga.org
Water is one of the most important elements of human survival and should be one of the first items on your list for emergency survival preparedness. During an emergency, like a natural disaster, water might be inaccessible or contaminated, so it’s important to store enough clean water to meet the daily needs of everyone in the family.
The following videos provide a thorough overview for drinking water storage planning using 275-gallon IBC totes, 55-gallon plastic barrels, and other storage containers suitable for long-term storage.
Learn more about water storage planning at the following links:
Food and Water in an Emergency
Creating & Storing an Emergency Water Supply
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