Nowadays, there’s a tremendous amount of awareness regarding sustainable agriculture practices. With so much controversy over GMO’s and environmental impacts of food production, there is a strong need for sustainable options to maintain our healthy food supply. Though it’s still up for debate, there’s a strong argument for the emphasis on perennial crop production as a solution to these problems. Perennial crop production provides our North American population with the majority of our diet.
Here are four ways perennial crop production offers advantages to agriculture:
Improve Soil Quality
The deep roots of perennial crops have better access to groundwater, requiring less irrigation and being more resistant to drought. They also combat topsoil erosion, runoff, and nutrient loss which can transform land into fertile ground.
Minimize Labor & Energy
Perennials require less labor, fuel, fertilizers, and water and are therefore less resource-intensive.
Reduce Greenhouse Gasses
Perennials combat greenhouse gas by dissolving carbon into the soil. When carbon is stored in soil instead of air, the quality of the soil improves while climate change impacts are mitigated.
Perennials hold the potential to return us to a more natural system where rigorous tilling and replanting is substituted with agriculture that essentially resembles prairie land.
To learn more about the benefits of perennial crops check out the original article by Molly Gee.