To the editor of THE EAGLE:

Northampton has the Round-up fever. Now Pittsfield, backed by the EPA, has it. The Unkamet Brook’s invasive plants are target for spraying. The EPA is using Round-up to make us safer. Round-up has been linked to instigating every degenerative disease. It was patented by Monsanto to chelate -- remove -- heavy metals from mines. When sprayed on plants, Round-up chelates a plant’s trace minerals. The plant becomes instantly nutrient deprived. Round-up doesn’t kill plants. The plant dies when a soil pathogen, fusarium, finds the mess. Round-up creates an imbalance, that nature can’t help to right.

Round-up is the most abundant man-made chemical in our environment. Scientists are not sure if it breaks down or stays bound to essential trace minerals forever. It takes a lot of biological effort to grow healthy plants from soil deprived by Round-up. The EPA shouldn’t spray a chemical that takes life further away from a healthy balance near a river that needs all the health it can get. High-performing invasive plants, phragmites, are actually bringing health to the river and its tributaries. High performing plants detoxify the environment.

Over the course of a growing season a high-performing plant exudes out its roots 2.3 times the total the amount of carbon it used to build itself. That means the visually huge invasive plant is giving 2.3 times what you see to the soil. They are trading sugars to microbes for nutrients. This action builds humus, which stimulates more biology, holds more nutrients from leaching and breaks down toxins. Fulvic acid, a product of this action, specifically stimulates biology to breakdown organo-carbons (i.e. PCBs). This is what the EPA should be spraying! We can learn from nature, enhance what nature is already doing and solve problems.

I use fulvic acid to grow healthy vegetables. Round-up is at unsafe levels in fat cells of every living being born and unborn. That is invasive. Invasive plants are along some rivers, in some streams, in some fields. Mostly they are where we can see. That is where we have created most of our imbalances they are actively mitigating. Have you dug underneath a patch of mature invasive plant? There is more black gold there than a well-rotted leaf pile! They are a living compost pile! We could learn from them to help our toxic areas.

LUKE PRYJMA

Great Barrington

The writer is owner and soil consultant for Balanced Land Health.