Mar 18, 2021
Jon Stika is an agronomist and
former soil health instructor with the USDA’s Natural Resources
Conservation Service (NRCS). Officially retiring in 2015, Jon now
spends his time as environmental consultant for those looking to
gain insight on the biological systems of agriculture. Jon is also
the author of “A Soil Owner’s Manual: How to Restore and Maintain
Soil Health,” which was published in 2016, yet continues to have an
impact on agricultural thought leaders around the globe.
Throughout their conversation,
Jon and John discuss:
- Jon’s realization that soil is
not a chemical system, but a biological one.
- The impact of using synthetic
fertilizers for several decades and how this has “sidelined” the
true biology of our fields.
- What it means to be energy
inefficient and the impact on mainstream agricultural systems and
- Jon’s 15-year journey to a
regenerative approach; how rapid implementation and economics can
inspire other growers to transition to integrating biological
- The differences between
building soil from the foundational bedrock versus the act of
- Jon’s belief in the power of
educating beyond the growers, working with lenders, banks,
agronomists, and landowners to help them understand and support the
transition to regenerative agriculture.
- How models used in mainstream
agriculture—and even sustainable agriculture—operate on a
foundation of “dysfunctional soil.”
Pick up a copy of Jon’s book, “A
Soil Owner’s Manual: How to Restore and Maintain Soil Health,”