Biodynamic agriculture was the first ecological farming system to arise in response to commercial fertilizers and specialized agriculture after the turn of the century, yet it remains largely unknown to the modern farmer and land-grant university system. The contribution of biodynamics to organic agriculture is significant, however, and warrants more attention. The following provides an overview of biodynamic farming and includes additional details and resources on the specialized practice of biodynamic composting.
A distinguishing feature of biodynamic farming is the use of nine biodynamic preparations described by Steiner for the purpose of enhancing soil quality and stimulating plant life. They consist of mineral, plant, or animal manure extracts, usually fermented and applied in small proportions to compost, manures, the soil, or directly onto plants, after dilution and stirring procedures called dynamizations.
The original biodynamic (BD) preparations are numbered 500-508. The BD 500 preparation (horn-manure) is made from cow manure (fermented in a cow horn that is buried in the soil for six months through autumn and winter) and is used as a soil spray to stimulate root growth and humus formation. The BD 501 preparation (horn-silica) is made from powdered quartz (packed inside a cow horn and buried in the soil for six months through spring and summer) and applied as a foliar spray to stimulate and regulate growth. The next six preparations, BD 502-507, are used in making compost.
Like most of us city folks, if you are one man/woman, with NO cow, on one planet this new product at our online store incorporates many of the biodynamic principles which anyone can use in their garden.
I know a lot of our reader’s are curious to know which natural applications, especially now that we are incorporating alternatives to any (organic) NPK fertilizers, we are using in our garden.
JungleFlora is a fermented blend of Composted Cow and Chicken Manures, Vermicast, Acadian kelp, Fish emulsion, Volcanic rock dust, Potassium Humate and Filtered Rain Water
Farmer D and J inform me that we are now going on 12 months of applying this ‘Jungle Juice’ to the garden along with EM and Rock Dust they have been using to increase plant (and soil) health and productivity.
When You Garden You Grow
Farmer D, leading Freedom Garden proponent, has said all along that gardening is not just about growing vegetables, but soil and for over 20 years we have been doing just that here on our 1/10 (one-tenth) acre garden. Through our hard work and efforts we have, over time, been blessed with productive results. And over time, we’ve learned from our successes and failures (and more failures) and are still growing to this very day. Every day there are new challenges to overcome, problems to solve. Each day teaches us that we are masters of none, but student gardeners who learn and grow with each growing season.
With that in mind, it’s great to see fellow Freedom Gardeners spurred on to tally up their gardening results.
Just Dig It!
Fact: in 1943 gardens were planted by about 20 million families and would eventually provide nearly half of the fresh produce consumed during the war period. In fact, the gardens were so productive that Americans produced eight million tons of fruit, vegetables and herbs in their own households.
It’s our earth, we dig it – don’t you?