In the mountains of Norway, Isak is a pioneer, clearing away land in an uninhabited forest to build a home. He is soon joined by Inger, a woman with a facial deformity, but with a good work ethic. They marry, and their children, Eleseus and Sivert, grow up on the estate Isak is continually building, known as Sellenraa. But their cozy life is disrupted when Inger is imprisoned for committing infanticide. She returns after 5 years, and life at Sellenraa resumes as normal as possible. Other families begin to settle in the untamed area, each with their own problems. When copper is dicovered on part of Isak's property, he makes a small fortune. But wealth does not eliminate the troubles of Sellenraa--Inger's infidelity, the wayward son Eleseus, Inger's meddling relative, Oline. Growth of the Soil spans over twenty years, as it follows the lives of Isak, his family, and his neighbors.
This report prepared by Cassie