1. The program teaches truly sustainable methods for raising a wealth of food crops in virtually any soil, in almost any climate or season, and at practically any elevation–in other words, under almost any conditions.
2. The program uses scientific principles and procedures, has been tested and proven in many countries over the course of 40+ years, and is not a passing fad. It carefully teaches and demonstrates the best known agricultural procedures.
3. The program is simple in that almost anyone can learn it and carry it out, either in home gardens or on large acreages. And the basics can be learned well enough to grow highly productive gardens even by people who cannot read or write.
4. For large field-crop operations, the program tests and balances the soil regularly and applies natural mineral nutrients as needed for it to produce almost any kind of crops, even many crops traditionally considered unsuitable for growing in a particular climate. In home gardens, a complete, balanced natural mineral nutrient mix is used, which requires no soil test and feeds plants properly.
5. The program uses any available organic materials that are disease, insect, and weed-free, including freshly harvested crop residue, green-manure, and cover crops; but this program is different than some that are commonly referred to as complete organic gardening methods. Additional natural mineral nutrient fertilizers are used to build up a complete balance in the soil – in other words, to restore the soil to its original Edenic composition as far as possible. It is often referred to as “the best of organic gardening”.
6. Weeds are taboo in Foundation garden beds, aisles, and perimeters. They are simply not permitted anywhere in the Foundation’s gardens or fields.
7. Practically every foot of space is made productive. This makes for a very economical and efficient gardening operation, as it requires no more effort or expense to create and maintain such gardens than traditionally cultivated areas. Even small garden plots can thus produce very large yields.
8. To produce healthy, fast-growing, disease and pest-free (in other words almost perfect) plants, Foundation-trained growers grow seedlings of many varieties in a greenhouse that is kept free of insects, weeds, and diseases.
9. The program produces commercial-quality plants of uniform size, color, and quality in all stages of growth; with very low mortality rates.
10. Each plant is given individual attention as needed, even to surrounding it with an insecticidal ring of sawdust in extreme situations, such as if cutworms are present in the garden. Also, if garden soils carry disease, healthy greenhouse transplants are protected by a liquid fungicidal shield. And in all cases a starter natural mineral nutrient minimizes transplant shock and assists the plant until normal growth takes over.
11. Where no soil is available, “custom” soil is manufactured with a combination of as much as 75% of any combination of sawdust, rice hulls, coffee hulls, peat moss, ground-up bark, or even ground-up coconut husks or pine needles and the balance of sand, or if necessary other available clean, disease-free soil.
12. On very rare occasions where necessary, the entire garden may be sterilized of insect life, diseases, and noxious weeds. This process has previously been accomplished by fumigating the area under plastic covers with methyl bromide gas. Recently this has become largely unavailable, and steam or flame is used if possible.
13. The program makes drastic changes in primitive farming methods encountered so many places around the world by introducing scientific agricultural methods, modern equipment, and all the natural mineral fertilizers called for by accurate soil testing, often increasing yields by ten times.
14. This new program consistently produces fantastically abundant crops that are neatly uniform in quality, size, and color.
15. Foundation-inspired gardens are a financial success, with yields typically increased five to ten times. They are actually saving millions of people in over 30 countries from slow starvation, and have raised educational and hospital institutions from failure and threatened closure to financial security.
16. Gardens are organized and laid out uniformly and symmetrically, and all crops are planted in straight lines or pleasing curves, resulting in gardens and fields of park-like beauty.
17. Whenever a plant shows discoloration, wilting, leaf damage, or other signs of stress, Program graduates note the symptoms and often know the cause, whether it’s disease, bug infestation, or nutrient deficiency. If nutrients are found to be deficient they prescribe a corrective treatment and spoon-feed the affected plant or plants with the necessary plant nutrients. If it is a matter of disease or bug infestation, they act as doctors, observing symptoms to diagnose and prescribe the corrective treatment as far as possible.
18. Every gardening operation is carefully budgeted and plans are made for making maximum use of the harvest, including sharing or marketing any surpluses.
19. Gardening or farming using the efficient Foundation methods is actually a highly enjoyable experience. We know from wide experience that with the use of these scientific methods greatly increased yields can consistently be obtained.
20. Although Jim Kennard is an expert gardener, he is first of all an inspiring teacher. He has caught the spirit of true education, and seeks to arouse in his students the desire to glean “from men and books and laboratories, from field and forest and whispering wind”, and more. He teaches that every truth is worth learning; that harnessing our appetites and directing our energies toward good ends produce rewards far greater than garden crops. And he teaches and demonstrates that true education is the harmonious development of the individual’s physical, mental, and spiritual powers.