Teaming With Nutrients by Jeff Lowenfels (Review)
Jeff Lowenfels’ first book, Teaming With Microbes , was a fascinating guide to the soil food web – the interdependent world of fungi, bacteria, worms, and microbes that live in healthy soil. The groundbreaking book illuminated a mysterious and sometimes difficult subject for thousands of gardeners, myself included.
In Teaming With Nutrients: The Organic Gardener’s Guide To Optimizing Plant Nutrition, the 2nd book of what he calls the Teaming Trilogy, Lowenfels builds on Microbes, and digs into how plants take up nutrients, the fascinating chemical and biological processes within plant cells, and how these actions and reactions create flowers, fruits, and vegetables.
But you don’t need a degree in botany, plant biology or chemistry to follow along. For those of us who promptly forgot what we learned in high school and college about mitochondria, RNA, organelles, hydrogen, protons, anions, chloroplasts, and other things we thought we’d never use, Lowenfels reintroduces us to the basics and builds upon them in subsequent chapters.
[mantra-pullquote align=”right” textalign=”center” width=”33%”]”Justice Von Liebig, considered by most as the father of modern agricutural science, proposed the Law of the Minimum [which] states…. plant growth is limited by the least abundant mineral, no matter how abundant the other minerals happen to be.” – Teaming With Nutrients.[/mantra-pullquote]
Many gardeners dump fertilizers – organic or otherwise – on their plants with little knowledge of how these chemicals feed the plant, or if the plant actually needs them. This is a haphazard way of going about gardening and not without significant environmental impacts beyond your garden and yard. In Nutrients, Lowenfels shows us how plants use the specific elements, when to apply them, and in what quantities. He also illuminates why organic sources are superior to synthetics, and includes plenty of illustrations, photos, and diagrams to illuminate the text.
Books like Teaming With Nutrients (and Teaming With Microbes ) are like adding better, sharper, more durable tools to your garden shed. Knowing the science of plants and soil helps you make better decisions before planting, change course safely when necessary, and avoid rudimentary mistakes that can be season-enders.
Another great book from Lowenfels.
Buy on Amazon:
Teaming with Nutrients: The Organic Gardener’s Guide to Optimizing Plant Nutrition (Hardcover)
Teaming with Nutrients: The Organic Gardener’s Guide to Optimizing Plant Nutrition (Kindle Edition)