“A breakthrough book. . . . well worth owning and reading. No comprehensive horticultural library should be without it.” —American Gardener
“Digs into soil in a most enlightening and entertaining way.” —Dallas Morning News
“Required reading for all serious gardeners.” —Miami Herald
“The authors have given gardeners an inside scoop on the scientific research supporting organic gardening.” —Pacific Horticulture
“This intense little book may well change the way you garden.” —St. Louis Post-Dispatch
“Exceptional. . . . A brief, clear overview of scientific information with which every gardener should be familiar.” —Monterey Herald
“Sure, it’s a gardening book, but it has all the drama and suspense of an extraterrestrial thriller. A cast of characters without eyeballs or backbones. Battle scenes with bizarre creatures devouring one another. Only this book is about as terrestrial as it gets.” —Anchorage Daily News
“All good gardeners know healthy plants start with healthy soil. But why? And how? In Teaming with Microbes Lowenfels and Lewis reveal the new research in the most practical and accessible way.” —The Oregonian
“Read this book and you’ll never think of soil the same way.” —Seattle Post-Intelligencer
“Sure, it’s a gardening book, but it has all the drama and suspense of an extraterrestrial thriller. . . . Read this book and you’ll never look at soil the same way.” —B&B Magazine
“A must read for any gardener looking to create a sustainable, healthy garden without chemicals.” —Virginian-Pilot
“It takes readers underground to meet the critters that live if you let them under the garden.” —Rockland Courier-Gazette
“[Teaming with Microbes] was one of those ‘aha’ moments for me, where I realized I had been growing wrong this whole time.” —Matthew Frigon (Founder of Lazy Bee Farms) in Dope Magazine
From the Back Cover
Winner of the Garden Writers Association Gold Award for Best Book Writing
Smart gardeners know that soil is anything but an inert substance. Healthy soil is teeming with life—not just earthworms and insects, but a staggering multitude of bacteria, fungi, and other microorganisms. When we use chemical fertilizers, we injure the microbial life that sustains healthy plants, and thus become increasingly dependent on an arsenal of artificial substances, many of them toxic to humans as well as other forms of life. But there is an alternative to this vicious circle: to garden in a way that strengthens, rather than destroys, the soil food web—the complex world of soil-dwelling organisms whose interactions create a nurturing environment for plants. By eschewing jargon and overly technical language, the authors make the benefits of cultivating the soil food web available to a wide audience, from devotees of organic gardening techniques to weekend gardeners who simply want to grow healthy, vigorous plants without resorting to chemicals.
This revised edition updates the original text and includes two completely new chapters—on mycorrhizae (beneficial associations fungi form with green-leaved plants) and archaea (singled-celled organisms once thought to be allied to bacteria).
About the Author
Jeff Lowenfels is the author of a trilogy of award winning books on plants and soil, and he is the longest running garden columnist in North America. Lowenfels is a national lecturer as well as a fellow, hall of fame member, and former president of the Garden Writers of America.