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[compost_tea] Re: Web of Life

Siegfried and Uta Luebke in Austria developed the Controlled
Microbial Composting system. 

When I studied under the Luebkes they alluded to the work
of Raoul France and his wife, Annie France-Harrar. They
especially referred to Raoul France's book "Bios, die Gesetze
der Welt" (Bios: The Laws of the World).

Since Raoul France's body of work is published in German,
it is not readily accessible.

However, an English-language biography was published in 2000
and it provides a fascinating account of Raoul France's
lifetime achievements in microbiology, accompanied by an
extensive bibliography. 


Raoul France' and the Doctrine of Life. 2000. By Rene'Romain
Roth.  1st Books Library, Bloomington, IN. 320 p.

France' is considered the father of soil ecology, and coined
the terms and underlying concepts for "edaphon," "biocenotics",
"biotechnik", "bionics," and "psychobiology." 

This is an excellent biography; it is fascinating. It provides
insight to Raoul France's studies in microbiology, microscopy,
soil ecology, and onwards to the unifying philosophical
systems he developed resulting in "Bios: The Laws of the World",
and so forth, dating from 1892 to 1943.

Raoul, who was director of the Munich Biological Institute,
published dozens of papers and books, for example:

"Forays into a Drop of Water"

"Edaphon - A New Biological Community"

"Studies on Edaphic Organisms"

"Edaphon - Studies in the Ecology of Soil-inhabiting

In 1950, Annie France-Harrar published "The Last Chance for
a Future Without Want" through the Bavarian Agricultural
Publishing House.  The book "created a sensation among
soil scientists and agronomists because it sounded an alarm
for the future food supply of humanity by drawing attention
to the danger of humus destruction and soil erosion."

This resulted in an invitation from the Mexican government
to help remediate soils in Mexico.  Annie subsequently worked
in a microbial laboratory in Mexico from 1955 to 1961. They
developed a new type of fertilizer called "Edaphon-humus"
bricks which "contained a selection of soil-inhabiting
microorganisms in pure culture and which were used
to inoculate agricultural soil with humus-producing

"Besides, she also created "Petrfil" bricks which
contained lithobionts; i.e., microorganisms that
inhabited rock surfaces and caused rocks to disintegrate
into soil."

On the web, when you look for Annie France-Harrar,
many of the websites pertain to wurmhumus, regenwurm,
regenwurmfarm, humusproduktion, and so forth. 

Altogether, 36 books by Annie and 84 books by Raoul;
one together; plus hundreds of articles and journal

Thought ya'll might find these people interesting as
a resource on earlier developments in soil ecology,
humus, and microbes.

Steve Diver

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