Workshops and Lectures

Haviland Earth Regeneration Presents
Cultivating the Soil Food Web

Enhancing Plant Productivity

Through Cultivation, Identification and Documentation of Soil Microorganisms.   


Photo from Dr. Ingham

There are two fungal strands one is budding and one is not. The testate amoebae is hiding in his shell. Image taken at a 1:5 dilution and  400 total mag.

Your growing system can be more than organic, it can be regenerative.

With a properly balanced and diverse soil food web there will be:

Plant Productivity

Disease Resistance

Nutrient Retention

Nutrient Cycling

Water Retention

Soil Stabilization

Reduction of Weeds

Carbon Sequestration

Toxin Breakdown

 Sample Courses

Day 1: Decomposition and Cultivating the Soil Food Web (4 hours)

We will introduce you to the cast of characters that make up the Soil Food Web (SFW). By the end of this lecture you will understand the symbiotic relationship between plants and soil microorganisms. You will understand which microorganisms your growing system needs to thrive. You will understand how to establish a growing environment that increases and maintains SFW population for plant productivity and disease resistance.

Day 2: Composting Methods and Applications (4 hours)

This day’s lecture will cover aerobic thermal compost, static compost, and vermicompost. We will discuss the basic rules of these methods and how to ensure that a beneficial SFW is being cultivated. We will discuss how to make and use compost amendments such as humic acid, compost extract, and aerobic compost tea. *An optional hands-on workshop in building aerobic thermal compost can be added to day 2. We need to know well in advance to arrange for the appropriate materials and tools to be available for the demonstration to be successful (2 hours +).

Day 3: Identifying the Soil Food Web (4 hours)

This class teaches you how to do your own qualitative sampling on soil, compost, compost extract or compost tea. The ability to identify if there is active microbial presence in a sample indicates if plants are receiving or lacking in nutrients and minerals. 
*Students are required to have a compound microscope with a 10X eye piece and 4X, 10X, and 40X lenses as well as appropriate sampling equipment (glass slides and cover slips etc).

I recommend contacting your local high school or college to request access to their laboratory.  So far, only one place has done this and it worked with great success.  This course could be made available to professors, teachers and students, depending on the arrangement you make.  This is a great way to establish interdependence in your community. 

By the end of this day you will be able to responsibly use a microscope, make dilutions, and identify key soil organism presence. 

Day 4: Identifying and Documenting the Soil Food Web (4 hours)

We will revisit sampling and identifying organisms. This is a skill that takes time, practice, and patience. The whole class will do one sample together to compare variance in a sample and practice data entry. We will discuss what the data means and discuss further steps to take in enhancing an amendment or treating soil.
*Students should bring a laptop on this day for successful learning integration.

Depending on your needs and our availability, we can tailor our courses from a half day minimum to a 6 day course. Our students seem to do best when classes are no longer than 4-6 hours.

Haviland Earth Regeneration On the Road

We do love to travel!  If we aren’t in your area, we sure would like to be.  Please contact us so we can arrange to meet you, your growing system or your community event.  We require room and board as well as travel expenses paid in addition to a daily rate. We are available for weekend courses as well as starting up a lab of your own. 

This is what the pile should look like after mixing.  Windrow on Meyer's Farm in South Dakota.  IMG_0339

What is Haviland Earth Regeneration?

Haviland Earth Regeneration is a traveling laboratory specializing in teaching the foundational principles of building a balanced soil food web.   The goal of Haviland Earth Regeneration is to establish this decade as one that goes down in history for:

  1. Building and Stabilizing Soil Humus As Quickly As Possible
  2. Growing Food That Is Medicine = Increase of nutrient and mineral density in food
  3. Creating Robust Human Microbiomes = We are what we eat

How can this decade go down in history for soil, food and human regeneration?  It starts in the soil.  We must bring back a diversity of organisms into growing systems.  Haviland Earth regeneration keeps no secrets.  There is far too much work to be done for this to be proprietary.  So, we begin with building Compost.

We Define Compost 

The capital “C”  differentiates Compost that gets the results regenerative agriculture methods boast about. This is in contrast to compost – referring to a product that results from waste reduction processes.  While waste reduction is a step in… a direction,  waste reduction often incinerates products, rendering it lifeless or in some cases will create more diseases which leads to the purchasing of what we call icides.  Yes, you know icides – fungicide, pesticide, herbicide, insecticide… It’s time to think quality versus quantity.

Bringing Nutrition Back Into Food

We are what we eat.  If you don’t believe me then scour this site.  How are we to have a healthy gut biome if what we are putting in our lungs (through breathing), on our skin (through being outside and what we choose to lather up with) and into our mouths (through ingesting) is full of toxins or void of life?  There are two organisms on this planet that decompose.  Decompose means to break something down into its most component parts.  Now, the organisms that decompose are bacteria and fungi.  They are (or should be) in the soil and they are (or should be) in your digestive system.  If they in neither of those places, the immune system of plants and humans are compromised and disease sets in.  Food gains strength and immunity toward disease through photosynthesis and a relationship with diverse soil biology.  This is a fact.  There is TONS of research on it.  Here is one example. Of course we can guess what the plant needs, we have been doing this for quite some time, yet, it has posed a few problems, no?

Bringing Knowledge into Communites

The 2016 goal for Haviland Earth Regeneration is to bring soil food web techniques to every state in the U.S..  We will build high quality compost, brew teas and create extracts, we will apply robust biology onto growing systems, and gather data from farms to national parks along the way.  Courses for groups and private individuals will be offered.  This can’t happen without and invitation (and yes, we do charge money), so if you are interested in having us in your community, please do send us an invitation.

If you want qualitative soil analysis done (who is in my soil, Compost or tea).  Then follow this link for more information.

Contact Us

Molly C. Haviland


The presence of a diverse Soil Food Web benefits your plants, your livestock, you, your family, customers and the environment.

It’s time to start building soil.


3 responses to “Workshops and Lectures

  1. Hi Molly, I’m a farmer from Nottinghamshire England and I’ve been reading and watching clips about composting and biology for around a year now and find myself increasingly interested in all what you do!
    What would be the best ( most practical ) way for me to get on and learn from your courses!?
    Kind Regards

  2. Pingback: Teaching Living Soils Course is a Dream Come True for Alumna Molly Haviland – The Daily Sun

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