Biodynamic vs. Organic farming

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What is Biodynamic farming? – biodynamic farming is a system where soil is the most important component and is central to all the operations in biodynamic farming. With this type of farming each field or garden is considered a biological whole. Soil fertility is key in biodynamic farming.

Organic farming – organic farming is a sustainable system where the organic process helps both the soil, and the sustainability of the farm, farming operation and the people who consume the food. An organic farm is open to all ecological systems and benefits all.

I first learned about biodynamic farming while watching a food documentary called- Restaurant Australia . In one of the episodes, one of the chef’s visit a vineyard and the vintner explains how she is using biodynamic processes in her vineyard. Biodynamic principles are based on spiritual and ethical insights as well as practical suggestions developed by Rudolf Steiner. Biodynamic farming combines a holistic, ecological and ethical approach to farming and gardening. It is widely used in Europe especially in orchards and vineyards.

Organic farming is farming without pesticides, chemicals or fertilizers. Though organic farmers can and do use natural pesticides and fertilizers. They do not use seeds that have been genetically modified. People who want to live a more sustainable life, as well as a healthier life, (chemical free) buy and consume organic food, and meat from livestock fed organic crops (usually grass because approx. 93% of the corn grown in the U.S. is genetically modified). Both the land and the consumer benefit from organically grown food. The most important reason the land benefits is because the soil remains fertile and the ecosystems that the soil is composed from thrive and continue to thrive because there are no toxic chemicals being sprayed on them.

Biodynamic farming- uses everything that is a part of the farm to sustain the farm as a whole organism. It is a holistic approach to soil fertility and agriculture that takes from what is within the farm itself to sustain the farm. In this kind of farming everything on the farm and the farm itself benefit from the principles used. Of course those that live on the farm and those that eat food from a biodynamic farm also benefit. I am told the taste of food grown on a biodynamic farm is far superior to most foods grown elsewhere, especially those foods grown on conventional farms.

I found an interesting site that really explains biodynamic farming here.
I found information about Rudolf Steiner, the founder of the biodynamic approach to farming, here . FAQ about biodynamic farming here.

I must admit that I am intrigued and very interested in learning and even visiting a biodynamic farm. I don’t think there needs to be a competition between the two and I don’t think one needs to choose one or the other. Both practices are good for the soil, good for what is grown in the soil and good for the people who consume the products. The part I like the most about biodynamic farming is that everything is used and what is needed for the farm’s sustainability comes from within. Very little if anything is brought from the outside into a biodynamic farm. An example of this is the cattle graze the pasture and the waste produced while they graze is turned back into the pasture land from which they will once again graze. No fertilizers from the outside needed. The very richness of the land the cattle graze is made from the very waste the cattle produce. This is a good example of why biodynamic farming is considered a closed system. I’m very interested in the regenerative nature of this type of farming.

Anyway, that’s all for now. I’ll see you Tuesday with some fall photos, my fall to do list and more.

 

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