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Dovehouse Green Dictionary

Biodegradable.

Biodegradable is the ability of a substance or object to decay naturally and in a way that is not harmful – usually being decomposed by bacteria or other living organisms and thereby avoiding pollution.

Our rivers and oceans are overwhelmed by nondegradable plastic waste. Artificial chemicals and fertilizers don’t biodegrade, synthetic clothing won’t either, nor cleaning products that contain phosphates or petroleum-based solvents.  EDTA is a commonly used softener that improves detergent performance but shows poor biodegradability in natural environments, thereby negatively affecting the balance in aquatic systems.

Biological. 

Biological farming focuses on building the soil using conventional and sustainable farming practices. With limited use of fertilizer, herbicides and insecticides. It is therefore not purely organic.  Many farmers are switching to Biological farming as a way of converting from conventional to organic farming .

Ecological Design 

Ecological design minimizes environmentally destructive impacts by integrating with living processes.  In farming and urban landscapes ecological design is about enhancing ecological services like water purification, air conditioning, decomposition of waste materials – services that humans need and take for granted.  An ecologically designed food production system makes the best use of Nature’s services, without damaging these resources, to create healthy food, environments and communities.

Nutrient-dense. 

This term refers to food that has a high vitamin and mineral content, with relatively low calories.  Choosing nutrient dense foods help you pack the most nutrition into your diet while not overdoing the calories. Vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts and seeds are nutrient dense foods.

Organic. 

Organic farming is a method of crop and livestock production that involves much more than choosing not to use pesticides, fertilizers, genetically modified organisms, antibiotics and growth hormones. Organic production is a holistic system designed to optimize the productivity and health of everything within the agro-ecosystem, including soil organisms, plants, livestock and people.

The main goal of organic production is to develop enterprises that are sustainable and harmonious with the environment.

Soil Ecology. 

The soil we grow your food in contains a wide variety of organisms, which interact and influence one another. Organic matter is a key component of soil – a mixture of living (plant roots, insects, fungi, protozoa, bacteria) and dead or decaying components.  50% of soil