Early plowing of the Nile River floodplain made sense as new silt and fertility was deposited every year.
It's time to prepare garden beds for planting. The best planting soil is light and fluffy, full of air and with all plant residue removed. Right? That's what we have learned from industrial agriculture practices and rototiller advertising. But these practices can reduce productivity and can be destructive to soil health and thus human health. Over-tilling of farmland and garden systematically kills soil life and forces us to replace natural nutrients with chemicals fertilizers.
After over 200 years of industrialized agriculture and decades of "green revolution" chemical agriculture what is the health of our soils, and our farming and food system? Is farming more or less sustainable… economically, nutritionally and environmentally? Are we behaving as if the health of the soil is directly linked to our health and that of the natural world? Do we act as if the majority of the human-caused greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere result from cutting down forests, paving wetlands, overgrazing pastures and over-working farmland? All these questions must be answered in the negative.