Q. You have convinced me – as well as anyone else who has gardened using the Mittleider Method – of the importance of minerals for optimum plant health and productivity. The Mittleider formula works so well because it provides the plants with the building blocks of what they are made of.
I am more and more convinced, that the human body is much like a plant, and that if it has the raw materials or building blocks of what it is made of, it too will grow healthy, strong, productive and resistant to disease. Anyone who has raised livestock is surely aware of the key roll that supplementation plays in that business of “growing” animals. In other words, the body will maintain and regain good health on its own if we simply provide it with the materials it needs to function optimally.
I have tried to figure out the best way to supplement my diet in order to provide the essential vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that I need that are lacking as a result of poor eating habits, and from eating “healthy” foods grown in mineral deficient soils. If the minerals are not in the soil, they will not be in the plant, as plants cannot manufacture minerals – they can only convert them into a usable form for themselves and for us. People are more aware today of the difference between, for instance, calcium lactate and calcium citrate, or other minerals that are chelated to increase absorption. As I peruse the endless supplement choices in the supermarkets and health food stores looking to supplement with those minerals that I am deficient in, it can be quite daunting. Which will work, and which won’t? Which one is best? Which are fads that will soon die like most do? Which are worth the money, and when is it too much?
I have come to the conclusion that the best source of vital nutrients for health are plants that are grown in soil rich in all of the macro, micro and trace elements of which we are made. We are made of dust- but we can’t eat dirt and expect to live! We need help from plants to convert this “dust” to a form we can use, or eat animals that have accomplished this conversion for us.
However, I believe that no matter how much by way of greens, meat, or supposedly “good” food we eat, we will not get full nutritional benefits if they do not contain all of the minerals that we need – and these can only be derived from the soil. All of which leads to my questions:
1. Can soil be tested to see what minerals it is deficient in, even down to the trace minerals, and can it be done at a reasonable cost?
2. Can and will plants absorb an increased amount of certain minerals if that mineral is added in greater proportion to the soil as an amendment? I know certain plants have different ratios of certain minerals, but do plants absorb all minerals if they are available? What if you need more calcium, for example. Can increasing this amendment produce plants with increased calcium?
3. The 13 minerals that are in the Mittleider formula are wonderful and obviously better than what is typically used. But our bodies need 40 or more of these essential elemental nutrients. Is there a simple and cost effective way to supplement the soil with ALL of the minerals we as humans need- even down to the trace elements (like selenium, for instance) that are so often underestimated?
The Mittleider Gardening books and Manuals teach all you need to know about this subject, and can be purchased in the Store section, or as digital downloads.
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