Masters of Health Magazine August 2022 - Page 83

the maximum beneficial qualities without the use of additives or preservatives. The raw ripe fruit has a unique taste unlike any other fruits, with a distinct blue-cheese-like flavor, which gives it the nickname “cheese fruit.” The dried form’s flavor is distinct but not nearly as cheesy, and it is highly concentrated in lignans, polyphenols, and flavonoids that support antioxidant defenses.

 

On the tour, Steve recommended a book by a Japanese scientist and farmer, Masanobu Fukuoka, titled “One-Straw Revolution,” that he had read many years ago and that was foundational to his own farming practices. The basic principle of the book is that the best forms of cultivation mirror nature’s own laws. In addition to his farm being USDA Certified Organic, Steve uses no cow manure, no organic fertilizers, no organic pesticides and no added minerals. Instead, he grows nitrogen fixing plants and trees that he uses as mulch to support the Noni trees’ nitrogen needs. From his personal experience of over 40 years of growing organically and “mimicking nature,” he uses an abundant amount of mulch in the orchards, occasional foliar spraying of compost teas, rock dust from a local quarry that is high in calcium and many trace minerals, and earthworms.

Over the years, Steve refined his agricultural practices to steadily increase yields from his trees. An extremely important part of his success story involves earthworms. On the tour, he shows the audience a large flat container full of earthworms, that he feeds regularly with pureed vegetarian food waste from the family’s meals. He adds to the worm bed shredded paper and grass from mowing the lawn. It is important to keep the worm bed damp and to keep the worms in the shade and covered loosely with a board to keep out the sunlight. The worms love the pureed food and they produce worm castings that are even better than cow manure to fertilize the Noni trees. He stated that just one cup of the worm castings placed under mulch surrounding the trunk of a Noni tree will be enough to keep the tree producing fruit the whole year round.