jrbustamante1SAM_0296Plants have the power to heal and keep us healthy, I believe.  After all, it is created by a higher power and has kept our ancestors alive when hospitals were not available. If we can only unlock the secrets that lies beneath these living forms perhaps we can eradicate the  man-made diseases that have been plaguing us in this day and age:  HIV, cancer of all kinds, leukemia, skin diseases, mental diseases, dengue, dementia, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease, to name a few.

SAM_0270During the Organic Farm Tour in Benguet Province, the three farms in focus were: Lily of the Valley, The Master’s Garden, and Garden of Life. In the first farm, the discussion focused on how to grow and maintain healthy vegetables such broccoli, cauliflower, and spinach without the use of chemical pesticides and fertilizers, instead a mix of natural pesticide spray and natural compost for the soil. 

SAM_0282In the Master’s Garden,  the discussion focused on the use of grass fertilizers instead of manure.  The investment of time and resources for healthier soil and produce is a lot in the beginning but the expenses reduce as the years go by. And the returns are more gratifying with healthier fruit and vegetables that’s  high in vitamins, and less sick and malnourished consumers.  According to owner, Mr. Pat Acosta, who offers seminars on how to maintain a healthy organic farm, the only reason that would keep farmers from pursuing organic farmSAM_0286s is LAZINESS.  It is much easier and faster to spray chemical pesticides on the plants once a week or month, than to laboriously apply natural pesticides at shorter intervals. The result is bigger, or rather bloated, vegetables which possess less nutrients than the ones grown the organic farming way.  The organic farm produce may be smaller but tougher, packed with more nutrients from a rich soil, and does not wilt right away.  That is one way on how you can tell if your vegetables are really organically grown: it lasts longer in the fridge. 

SAM_0273To begin organic farming, you have to prepare the soil to make it healthy and this usually takes three years to accomplish, according to Mr. Acosta.  Instead of using manure, he would opt for grass fertilizer applied routinely to enrich the soil.  It  removes any stench, and actually is more appetizing to the mind.  The effort of maintaining an organic farm is double than regular farms but when yoSAM_0278u establish a system or routine, the effort becomes a non-issue and the returns will be financially gratifying assures Mr. Acosta.  Income is continuous now in his case and more customers are coming in, more than his small farm can handle. That is why he made it his advocacy is to teach other farmers his way of farming for a small fee.

 SAM_0275One of his successful students is Mr. Felix Tan, the owner of the next farm we visited,  Garden of Life.  Mr. Tan, who is an herbal doctor,  also applies grass fertilizer for his farm which specializes in anti-cancer plants.  He is a staunch supporter of Mr. Acosta’s farming methodology as he practices Mr. Acosta’s purist way of composting.  His farm is clean and fresh-smelling without the foul-odor caused by decays in the composting area.

 

SAM_0247The belief that plants may be the cure to cancer or other fatal diseases is not as quixotic as some people may think.  Most medicines do come from plants, but what mix of plants will produce what effect is still the question.  When hope is gone from the medical side, patients look into the power of herbs.  The result of consuming more vegetables to clean and maintain our system is the healthy trend these days. So let’s do our own planting, and what we can’t plant we buSAM_0280y from organic farms, certified organic farms.  Help support Organic Agriculture, it’s the only way to go.  Even if it may not be totally sustainable at this point as there may not be enough supply for the huge demands, let us slowly transition to a healthier way of living by patronizing our organic farmers little by little so they may increase in numbers.

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