Skip to main content

Welcome to 2020

andy Lopez, aka: The Invisible Gardener and host of Don't Panic It's Organic

This year I am starting up a year long course in soil health and care. This will not only cover the basics of what it takes to have healthy soil but I will also cover diseases, pests as well as the usual things like rock dust, minerals, microbials, Brix, refractometer use. I also will cover compost tea and other various organic formulations that you can use in your 100% organic home and property. This column is one of the many ways I help others in having a better earth and healthier plants, trees, birds, humans. All you have to do is to read and try to keep up.

Don’t Panic Its Organic takes on a new meaning with climate change, pollution, and the mess humankind has made for itself. I recently saw a great show on TV that basically said that humankind needs nature, but nature does not need humankind. How true.

Humans have not been living up to their full potential. They have not been good gardeners of the Earth. More and more, I see major problems occurring around the world in our Eco-System while humankind continues on its path of destruction and wasteful practices. I am just one of many that point to nature and to her wisdom. She has already thought it through and has developed many natural systems to deal with climate change, healthy soil, healthy trees, and healthy beings living on it. These systems help to maintain balance as well as provide for a healthy ecosystem.

We can and must learn how to live in nature without destroying nature. We can try to destroy nature, but it is nature that will remove us from the picture if we do not behave. The removal process has already begun.

I often like to tell folks that Mother Nature has a disease and humankind is that disease. Thinking about that, I now understand that is not correct. Mother Nature is not sick, we are. We are our own disease. We are the cause and the effects are all around us in the form of pollution, radiation, plastic, toxins and much more. I hope, that I am able to help you to become better gardeners of the Earth. It is never too late, so get started today!

In an LA Times article, a columnist wrote that there is no difference between Organically grown food and Conventionally grown food. He cites several studies that prove there is no difference between the nutritional levels, and he cites doctors who all say the same thing: “Eating conventionally grown produce is not only safe but just as nutritional.”

It is besides the fact that conventionally grown produce totally ignores environmental issues, health issues of not just the consumer but the workers that pick it, as well as the fact that powerful business forces are at work here to keep the public confused.

Let’s ignore these issues (for now) and take a look at what is wrong with the idea that organic food and conventionally grown food are equal. First off, not every organic farmer knows what they are doing, just like not everyone that makes compost knows what they are doing.

You are only as good a gardener (farmer) as the compost you make. Not all compost is equal just like not all organic farmers are equal. Some are actual organic farmers while others are in name only.

Many farmers have decided to “Go Organic” because they will then be able to sell their “products” for more, but if I were to ask them just one question and if they failed that question, they will have not only the same problems as the conventionally grown, but their “produce” will not be any more nutritional, especially if the conventional farmer either does not make or use compost, but also does not apply rock dust .

There is a basic law of nature that says, You get out what you put in.” You want trace minerals? Then put them into the soil; however, you cannot just throw rock dust everywhere and expect the minerals to then become available to the plants.

All rock dusts are not the same, some are rich in calcium but low in iron; it all depends from what part of the world and how it was made that determines what minerals it has.

The article as well as other studies do not even mention soil depletion. I wonder why? If your soil is depleted of minerals, then the produce grown on it will also be depleted in minerals.

There is a key to this problem in the article which mentions taste. The better the taste the more minerals it has.

Taste tells us if we should eat it or not. We have developed over the years to eat what tastes sweet and not which tastes bitter. Pests have developed along the same lines except that nature in her wisdom made it such that when a plant has high Brix, it will have higher sugar, which in turn means higher mineral content, which in turn means higher complex carbohydrates (insects cannot digest complex carbohydrates) and it is the simple carbohydrates that plants get if they are fed high nitrogen fertilizers; they grow fast but are weak and deficient in minerals.

When I started my business back in 1956, I heard the same (from the Dark Forces) that chemical and organic produce are equal in nutritional value and what's a little pesticide? That has not changed over the many years. If you really want to know, test real organic farmers like Rodale, or The Bio-Dynamic Institute and compare them. All of the studies, including the most recent one are flawed in that they were not asking the right questions so they all found the same results and just passed them along. Did any study actually grow the different types of food and see for themselves? That takes knowledge of growing which most do not have and so the whole study is based on a false assumption.

This study looked at around 300 studies. It should be mentioned that these studies were mostly studies of other studies and that very few actually grew anything themselves. Those that did grow the food themselves were flawed in my opinion.

Here’s why-

First off, in the studies that did grow their own, the researchers were not farmers, let alone organic farmers. They assumed that by merely picking a plot, dividing it up into two sections, one organic and one conventional and then buying plants from one source, and then growing them according to each system they reached the conclusion that there was no difference.

Sounds simple, right?


read next weeks column.


any questions

please email me at