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Biodynamic Gardening – A Dance with Nature and the Cosmos


According to the Biodynamic Association, “biodynamics is a holistic, ecological, and ethical approach to farming, gardening, food, and nutrition.” Biodynamic gardening is similar to organic gardening but includes the esoteric concepts of Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925) and his suggested practices. Biodynamic agriculture began in 1924, when Steiner delivered a series of eight lectures to European farmers who had noticed a decline in the health and fertility of their lands, seeds, and animals. Biodynamics was the first of the organic agriculture movements.


Like other organic approaches, Biodynamics does not use artificial fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides, but emphasizes the use of manures and composts. However, it differs in a few areas. First, it views the soil, crops, and animals on a farm as a single, closed-loop system, which means the use of anything from outside the farm is strictly minimized. Biodynamic farming seeks to produce high-quality, nutritious food while also creating a healthy ecosystem on the farm. If there are healthy plants and healthy animals on a farm, this help create healthy soil, which replenishes the earth and builds fertility from within. Secondly, there’s an astrological calendar for sowing, planting, and transplanting used by many biodynamic farmers and gardeners, that’s based on the phases of the moon, as well as the moon's movement through the constellations. Biodynamics also uses herbal and mineral formulas for spraying the fields, or garden, and for the compost pile. The preparations of these formulas is where it gets esoteric. For example, Horn Silica (BD 501) is prepared by grinding down quartz crystals and burying them in a cow's horn over the summer months. This formula is then sprayed on plants when the moon is waxing.



Biodynamics is considered by many to be a step above organic farming and gardening; but the science doesn’t support Biodynamics as being any better. Yet, it's the esoteric, mystical practices of Biodynamics that appeal to me; I feel as if I’m dancing with my garden and the cosmos as I apply the homeopathic formulas to my garden, and while using the Stella Natura calendar, when planning to sow, transplant, and apply the formulas. The Stella Natura calendar can be purchased at the Josephine Porter Institute (https://jpibiodynamics.org/) or at Stella Natura (https://www.stellanatura.com/), where you can also purchase the formulas labeled “BD” 500-508, if you can’t make them yourself.


Just think about this – it was 98 years ago when Steiner gave these lectures, and his concerns regarding the destruction of the earth and the devitalization of food are happening. So, join the dance and give Biodynamics a try.


Resources

https://www.smdp.com/biodynamics-rudolf-steiner-and-planting-with-the-stars/156765

Soule, D., How to Move Like a Gardener, Willow Press, Rockport ME, 2017

Stella Natura, Biodynamic Planting Calendar, Camphill Village Kimberton Hills, 2022

https://www.pariscreekfarms.com.au/information-centre/bio-dynamic-vs-organic-farming-whats-the-difference/

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