Volcanic Soil

October 20, 2021 0 Comments

It started with a bang, a big bang…

75,000 years ago, it’s believed the Toba super-volcano erupted causing a global volcanic winter that lasted for 6 to 10 years. This resulted in a 1,000 year cooling episode – triggering a population bottleneck in human evolution. The Toba super-volcano eruption was easily 12 times larger than the biggest eruption in recent history (Mt Tambora, Dutch East Indies Indonesia, in 1815), which caused a year without summer in the Nth Hemisphere.

The Toba Eruption

Was so big it created the largest volcanic lake in the world (100km long, 30km wide & 505m deep) Lake Toba. It’s eruption created a giant plume of ash and smoke that stretched from the South China Sea to the Arabic Sea, depositing a layer of ash approximately 15 – 30cm over much of Sumatra, creating its ancient volcanic soil.

It’s believed this initial deposit of volcanic ash and the following eruptions from Sumatra’s 34 volcanoes (located along the convergent plate). Are responsible for the islands healthy and fertile volcanic soil, which has played a key role in world history.

Volcanic soil deposits

Can develop into some of the richest agricultural lands on earth because volcanic ash acts like time-release capsules, rich in nutrients. The process is known as “chemical weathering” when rocks are broken down by chemical reactions; they are actually being chemically altered and improved. Basically, volcanic soil is exceptional because they have high nutrient content, which allows soil to hold water for longer encouraging soil bacteria & seed germination. All of this is beneficial to the plants health and stimulates new growth.

Professor Jon Davidson, of Durham University, stated ‘fertile areas like Indonesia have benefited from volcanic ash in the past….” In general, volcanic ash is good because it’s full of all kinds of elements and nutrients that regenerate the soil’.

Mt Sinabung, 14 km from our farm & factory – helps us to cultivate organic jamu herbs.

Mt Sinabung has been active since 2013 and is largely responsible for the ease in which we can cultivate premium quality organic Jamu herbs. When the volcano is angry (erupting) and the wind blows SSE – organic fertilizer falls from the sky like snow. If this activity is followed by adequate rain, then you can almost see the leaves turn a shade greener within 2 – 3 weeks.

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