paper, 352 p., $49.95
The authors of this book, Sustainable Soils: The Place of Organic Matter in Sustaining Soils and Their Productivity, present the advantages of incorporating organic matter to improve the quality of intensely cultivated agricultural soils. Details of how this best can be accomplished, depending on soils and crops, make up the major part of this work. Authors Benjamin Wolf and George H. Snyder also explain the use of organics from various sources, including live and dead cover crops. Tillage is well covered, and a table of machinery adapted to “conservation tillage” is included. Studies of soil texture, soil moisture retention, nitrogen, and the availability of minerals are presented in order to compare the effects of various agricultural practices. The costs of increasing soil organic matter are compared to the costs of conventional fertilizers and their equipment needs.
This is an interesting book, aimed at farmers and growers looking for ways to improve productivity at lower costs.
— Elizabeth Tremulis, volunteer, Plant Information Office, Chicago Botanic Garden