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Changemakers, Feature

Climate: The Harvest Starts with Soil 

Cecilie Stuart poses with one of her Full Circle Compost bins. Photo courtesy of Cecilie Stuart

We are delighted to welcome a new contributor to our “changemakers” series. Dancer, social activist, Move the World founder and now community compost promoter with Full Circle Compost, and sustainability educator with her Drawdown series of workshops, Cecilie Stuart is non-stop in her passion to bring climate change solutions to children, families and communities. 

It’s great to be back at the Topanga New Times again. My previous column focused on Drawdown Climate Solutions as we are in the most important 8-year phase in history to restore our climate and prevent catastrophic warming. We all know we need to change so many things we do daily to reduce Co2 and methane gas to mitigate climate warming but if you’re like me, making these personal changes can be overwhelming, driving electric cars, installing solar panels, eliminating single-use plastics, and divesting our 401ks of all fossil fuel-related index funds. Whew! How do we do all this and still work and raise our families? But for today, let’s soak in the harvest season and revel in a climate strategy that is easy and feels natural to the human spirit, which is alive inside of us, making good soil and connecting to nature. It helps us remember that we humans are part of nature and not separate from it.   

This often-overlooked activity is soothing to the soul, rich with satisfaction, and is FREE!  

Soil microbes which are the microscopic creators of healthy soil structures are in much need of care. Nematodes and arthropods are only visible under a microscope as I recently discovered. Watching a diverse society of fungi, bacteria, and single-celled amoeba moving about, digesting food waste, and converting it into rich, moist soil was exhilarating. This family of microbes increases the water holding capacity and nutrition of our soil by creating little freeways of communication and exchanging food for water pockets and micronutrients that feed tiny plant roots and make them thrive. Essentially, they turn our hard-packed dirt for rich dark soil which when you squeeze it in your hand, gathers in a moist clump ready for planting. 

Since these microbes are invisible to the naked eye, they are little understood and often overlooked. During this harvest time of the year, you can reawaken your inner green thumb. Feeling into the crisper temperatures and observing the glorious Harvest moon on Wednesday, October 21. Building soil will not only improve our own garden but improve our old-growth Topanga Oak Woodland while you nurture this vibrant harvest season within.

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