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Re:CULT:Agricultural Antibiotics

From: "Carryl M. Meyer" <carrylm@bigsky.net>

I would like to add to what Anner said about using antibiotics for a
complete area of the garden--I spent my working career as a
Microbiologist--also Infection Control Coordinator at a hospital--and
through the years have seen the evolution of bacteria which have become
resistant to antibiotics--mostly because of the indiscriminant,
over-prescribed use of Antibiotics--now, there are infections which cannot
be controlled even with careful use of Antibiotics--
To use AB's in mass, over large areas of ground--is about the worst idea
that anyone can have--The soil contains bacteria, molds, fungus, virus
etc--and many have to be there for beneficial reasons--and to just 'kill
everything' is not good---
If an area is badly infected--it would be prudent to remove all plant
material--treat each plant as needed-and let the area lie fallow for at
least one summer of good, hot sun, turning the ground every several
weeks--to expose new areas to the sun--this will reduce the number of mold
spores--which is usually what causes the rot here in     our area--  Then
start replanting the area--making sure that there is enough room between
plants to allow for good air circulation--
I cannot believe that for the replacement cost of one or two rhizomes--a
grower would jeopardize the health of his complete garden, by covering
everything with an AB solution--
A friend of my husband who worked for Shell Oil company--as a research
person, spent his life testing proposed sprays on areas of ground--and
seeing which ones killed all the earthworms, killed all the
bacteria--etc--the conclusion, after many years of research, was to NOT use
broad-spectrum antibiotics over large areas of ground--as there are more
negative results than positive from doing this--rather--AB's can be
used--carefully and sparingly--toward a beneficial result--
We are the keepers of the soil--not the ruineers--for the coming
Carryl in western Montana--zone 3/4  where they keep saying it will
snow--and we have had about 6 flakes so far--

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