The first way I will celebrate Earth Day is by using these canvas bags. They were purchased 30 years ago and have served me well. They were used for buying groceries, going camping, going shopping, and going to the library. They were made to last.

Many people compliment me on using them. People tell me they have similar bags and really should use them. But that is as far as that goes. How did using these bags become a habit?

Earth Day is on my mind each day. I hang the bags on the door knob leading to the garage.

The bags are put in the car and ready for their next venture.

The bags are handy and have earned their keep, time after time. But the bags serve a bigger purpose. They remind me that I am a guest on this planet earth. I am responsible for leaving this earth in better condition than when I came here. Earth does not need to be covered with single-use plastic.

The second way I will celebrate Earth Day is to read a wonderful book by David R. Montgomery. The title is GROWING A REVOLUTION (Bringing Our Soil Back to Life).

For centuries, farming practices have eroded the soil that our food and sustenance depends on. The organic matter vital to its productivity has been lost.

Now current farming practices are depleting the soil faster than Mother Nature can replenish it. In this book, geologist David R. Montgomery travels the world, meeting farmers who are restoring the soil by changing their farming practices.

From Kansas to Ghana, he shows how these three steps can save the soil:

  • Stop plowing
  • Plant cover crops
  • Grow a diversity of crops.

These methods are working in small farms to large farms. When farmers restore soil back to health, the soil can feed the world. It can cool the planet by absorbing carbon and reduce pollution. Furthermore, it can return profitability to family farms.

This new revolution is not complicated. It comes down to two words: soil health. Farming must build soil organic matter. Yet farmers don’t need to go organic to lead this revolution. Agrochemicals can be useful tools–when used wisely. The good news is that this is already happening around the world.