Something magical is happening under Topher’s Labyrinth!
No, it’s not the famous Labyrinth Master’s sword that everyone is seeking out, it’s the soil under their feet.
Topher’s Labyrinth was conceived as a creative way to incorporate intense regenerative soil practices into the farm. While from a distance it may appear to be a classic-corn maze, this labyrinth is etched into a sorghum cover crop.
The cover crop is meant to improve soil conditions and drastically increase organic matter in the soil while also keeping weeds at bay. This practice of ‘resting’ a field prepares it for the following where the use of organic fertilizer (usually manure) can be significantly reduced if not eliminated.
The current labyrinth plot is interlaced with clover which absorbs nitrogen from the atmospher (another greenhouse gas) and stores it in its roots making it available for whatever crop is planted the following year.
It also serves as a huge carbon sink…the entire process can capture between 2-3 tonnes of CO2 per acre in just one year while reducing the use of tractor work by up to 25% for the next 3 years.
But this practice comes at a cost.
There is still quite a bit work involved to prepare a field the effectively does not produce for a year.
That’s where we came up with the idea for a labyrinth.
By giving the resting field a purpose it allows us to put more effort into the regenerative cycle and guarantee its part in future rotation of our farm crops.
Come see our regenerative practices in person at our farm stand and labyrinth at 6160 rte 143 in Waterville.
Labyrinth opens August 7th