Geoff and Debbie Bugden produce pecans on their farm, Wilson River Pecans, employing biological farming principles.
I caught up with Geoff at his Organic Pecan Farm in Boat Harbour near Lismore, NSW. Geoff has been self-supplying his own Fish Hydrolysate using SONIC Beneficial Microbes Starter Culture for around 2 years now, and I was keen to find out the results he had to share with us!
Primarily, the cost savings for Geoff have been huge. Instead of paying around $5,000 for 1000 litres of Fish Hydrolysate, he is making it himself for $500, a saving of $4,500 per 1000 litre IBC. He aims to use 6-8000 litres in the upcoming season so he will be spending $3,000 for his total amount of DIY Fertiliser, instead of buying it for around $30,000.
But, alongside the cost savings, Geoff is seeing the regenerative benefits of using Bio-Fertilisers. Annually, Geoff has his leaf tested for black spot, anthracnose, which is a problematic fungal disease on pecan trees, only to return this year with a perfect result. Geoff attributes it to the powerful “microbial fish spray” that he is spraying the trees with. Geoff says “we have had the best year with the most tree stress”.
How Does Fish Hydrolysate Work?
One of the unique ways in which the fish oils work is it sticks to and covers the trunk, branches and leaves of the tree. Because the fish oils are ‘inoculated’ with beneficial microbes, added in through the brewing process, the beneficial microbes are available ‘en masse’ to outcompete the bad pathogens for food and space. It’s the perfect natural plant immunity. Plus the fish, as a hydrolysate, gives so many more minerals and goodness to the soil, plants and trees alike.
This season Geoff will be following a holistic spray regime which he has adopted from a book by Michael Phillips ‘Mycorrhizal Planet’. Geoff recommends the book and the DIY Bio-Fertiliser Making System for farmers to improve soil, plant and tree immunity and to benefit from saving on fertilisers.
At the end of the day, farming is all about producing food. Blog author Sonja Kallio writes about supporting farmers and growers to adopt a regenerative approach with growing, to increase the nutrient density of food for a healthy population and a healthy planet.