|Burying a cows horn in the fall is a common biodynamic practice.|
“This book, subtitled An Introduction to the Supersensible Knowledge of the World and the Destination of Man, is a good starting point among the hundreds of books written by Rudolf Steiner. He sees a tripartate model of the individual here: body, soul and spirit, cautioning us that these are only approximate terms. In the course of this short two hundred page book we explore higher realities which have eluded the scientific method: planes of seething elemental spirits, zones wandered by reincarnating entities, and more abstract 'places' where Platonic Archetypes dwell. He explains how auras are one modality of these higher existences which we can view in our present form.”
“Biodynamic farming involves managing a farm utilizing the principles of a living organism. A concise model of a living organism ideal would be a wilderness forest. In such a system there is a high degree of self-sufficiency in all realms of biological survival. Fertility and feed arise out of the recycling of the organic material the system generates. Avoidance of pest species is based on biological vigor and its intrinsic biological and genetic diversity. Water is efficiently cycled through the system.While agriculture takes nature to a state that is one step removed from wilderness, the wisdom of the farmer that guides its course can reflect these ancient principles of sustainability. The view of the farm organism extends beyond the fence line and includes the tangible and intangible forces that work through it. Examples include the climate, inherent wildlife of the earth (above and below the ground), the light and warmth from the sun and the more distant astronomical influences. Biodynamic agriculture attempts to harmonize all of these factors within a holistic, living farm system. The food that results is very pure and true to its essence and provides deeply penetrating nutrition that is essential to an increasingly unhealthy human population.” –Demeter-USA.org
A Biodynamic preparation being stirred.“The use of the preparations is a requirement of the Farm Standard. There are nine in all, made from herbs, mineral substances and animal manures, that are utilized in field sprays and compost inoculants applied in minute doses, much like homeopathic remedies are for humans. Timely applications revitalize the soil and stimulate root growth, enhance the development of microorganisms and humus formation, and aid in photosynthetic activity.”
Where the Fertility Comes From: Must be produced on-site. This practice ensures that farmers aren’t depleting Natural resources but actually contributing to them.
“The Farm Standardinstructs that the foundation of the fertility system, and strategies for disease, insect, and weed control, must originate from the farm itself. Fertility is generated via the integration of livestock, compost and green manure, nutrient catch crops, and careful crop rotation. Disease and insect control are addressed through botanical species diversity, predator habitat, balanced crop nutrition, and attention to light penetration and airflow. Weed control emphasizes prevention, including timing of planting, mulching, and identifying and avoiding the spread of invasive weed species."
“The crops resulting from a certified Biodynamic farm are themselves certified (for example Biodynamic tomatoes), but in order to produce a certified processed product (for example pasta sauce) the product must be produced in accordance with the Demeter Biodynamic® Processing Standard. There are fourteen different processing standard categories (compared to one for the entire National Organic Program), including wine, cheese, olive oil, dairy and body care. The Processing Standard is very important because it guarantees an unbroken chain of accountability from the farm to the finished product, and delivers a product that allows for the integrity and purity of the agricultural ingredients to define it.”