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When I first decided to write this tutorial I thought it would only be intended for people using my lab. You would need a user name and password to access it. Now, that I am 68 and on the last lap of a mile race, I hope this contribution will help you and if you really like what you read, please consider using Western Laboratories.

Soils are more dynamic than any other thing in the universe. Ten grams of fertile garden soil contain more bacteria than all the humans, animals, trees, fish and birds that exist in the world.

Most diseases of plants and animals come from the soil or have a life cycle in the soil. Most cures for these diseases also live in the soil. Your most elite colleges put down the study of soils, but they all have law schools. If this nation were comprised only of hunters and gatherers, only two million people would occupy North America. That is why we had so many different tribes of Indians. They had to occupy a territory. Robins, today, occupy a territory, as do cougars and wolves, because they are hunters and gatherers.

There is an old saying: “Take care of the land and the land will take care of the cattle.” How do we relate that to today? In today’s thinking, this means take care of the soil and the soil will take care of you. It takes 7,000 years for Mother Nature to create one inch of topsoil and it takes only hours for man to destroy it.

We must be stewards of the land. Individuals who love the land best serve the land. President Gerald Ford stated if government were in the beer business a six-pack of beer would cost $50.00. As you can see our government is being run by stupid people, with stupid ideas, doing stupid things.

In 1900 70% of our population lived on a farm. During the Great Depression people in the city had relatives on the farm where they could seek shelter and aid. By 1940 farm population fell to 40%. Today there is less than 1% of our population that lives on a farm. The average farmer is 61 years old. Most of our elite universities look down on farming. Someday the stupid people in Congress will come up with the stupid idea that government can farm. That will be the end of our civilization, as we know it.

Farming and gardening is not a career. It is a love. You’ve got to have it in your belly. Once it is in your belly, you can’t get rid of it.

My name is John P. Taberna. I am a Basque sheepherders son from Buffalo, Wyoming and grew up in Oregon. I am a proud graduate of CalPoly SLO with a degree in Soil Science. I have gone to four different graduate schools, worked for the NRCS as a soil scientist, was a Corporate Soil Scientist for a large timber company, and have owned Western Laboratories since 1972. My company is very user-friendly and some of the smartest people I work with are giant pumpkin growers. But even they need help in understanding the complex soils. For those people who need help and those that think they don’t I published a tutorial online. Please click on the link below to access the tutorial.