I discussed Kourik’s assertion that planting holes should not be amended with my friend Joe Currie the other day (a longtime gardener and nurseryman). I described the studies that have been cited by Kourik and others, many done by Davis, along with other prestigious research institutions. Joe asserted that many of these studies are conducted in good soil, often deep delta soils. Also, he claimed that most of these sorts of studies are focused on agricultural applications, where it’s all about producing as much as possible for every dollar invested. When it comes to the home garden, the gardener is often more concerned with the taste and quality of the fruit and vegetables harvested than the cost versus weight harvested ratio. So the question is, does incorporating compost and or fertilizer in the planting hole improve the quality and taste of fruits and vegetables? Measuring taste and quality presents a challenge, because it is subjective, and thus qualitative. My hypothesis is that more compost does improve the taste and quality of fruits and vegetables.
My idea is to devise an experiment to test this hypothesis and then to solicit local home gardeners as researchers. All of the results could be published and compared online. Any ideas?