Nature as a Teacher for Biodynamic Farming Practices

Nature as a Teacher for Biodynamic Farming Practices

Cultivating the land and obtaining healthy food is an activity that requires professionalism and preparation. The environmental and climatic changes taking place make the farmer's job increasingly complex but also very fascinating. For the biodynamic farmer, cultivation is a continuous exchange between humans and nature. It is a living approach, guided by the laws of nature.

Over millennia, humans have developed a system of techniques and timing—agriculture—to ensure that plants are more suitable to become nutritious food. Once, tomatoes were small and bitter, wheat produced fewer seeds, and carrots were less sweet and more fibrous. Through skilled cultivation and selection, humans have increased the variety and consequently boosted biodiversity. Today, it's a delight to browse a catalog of biodynamic seeds and see the variety of colors and flavors we can grow.

It is important to clarify that GMO plants are entirely excluded from this way of operating because they do not follow natural laws but instead represent a high degree of artificiality. The constant care of seeds and plants allows the biodynamic farmer to collaborate with the forces of nature.

Pruning is also a crucial operation in this regard because it allows the plant to grow and develop for balanced production. Humans take care of the plant, and the plant, in turn, provides for humans. This relationship is one of reciprocity, knowledge of plant biology, understanding of one's soil, and the characteristics of one's plants.

There are times of the year more suitable than others for these operations. Towards the end of winter, when the plant's ascending sap is still weak, it is possible to intervene with pruning. This way, the plant can be stimulated, and by reducing the aerial parts, its vegetative strength is enhanced, favoring production and quality. If you want to strengthen the plant, you choose the period of the descending moon, as indicated by the biodynamic calendar, which is a very useful tool for synchronizing agricultural operations with natural rhythms and promoting vegetative vigor. In biodynamics, operations are timed with nature's rhythms, making them more effective.

Each year, astronomical calculations are used to predict celestial events. Based on nearly a century of biodynamic farming experience, it is possible to statistically forecast the best times for agricultural operations. For example, in managing vines, it is crucial to identify the periods between March and the end of May when sudden temperature drops can occur. The biodynamic calendar can provide plausible forecasts, and using preparation 507, made from Valeriana Officinalis, sprayed on the plants can help mitigate the effects of frost.

The calendar indicates the best times for pruning to enhance fruit and aroma development, ideal moments for sowing, soil work, and controlling fungal and bacterial diseases.

An important time for the farmer starts in mid-February when the grass begins to grow in the fields. This is when the first treatments with horsetail decoction can be made, as the spring awakening of the earth is a very delicate period, prone to fungal and bacterial growth. In biodynamic agriculture, these rhythms are closely observed because working in harmony with the natural world allows for more sustainable and profitable cultivation for both humans and the earth.

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