Posted by Julien Stern | Posted in Gardening | Posted on 07-01-2013
Biodynamic gardening is a method of special organic gardening that calls for treatment of gardens as individual and unified organisms. It emphasizes balance in the holistic interrelationship and development of plants, animals, and soil in a self-nourishing system even without external outputs.
The very special aspect that biodynamic gardening brings into the picture is that is gives emphasis on looking at the soil and the farm in a broader perspective. This only means that a garden is not just any area or plot but more of an environment where living organisms thrive. Having this line of thought the message of giving care and sustenance to every bit of creatures within the vicinity is given a high level of significance.
Although biodynamic gardening is regarded by many as a form of a pioneering modern ecological gardening technique, it would be more fair to say that it actually exists since the beginning of life on Earth. Natural eco-systems are, in fact, well-balanced ensembles of plant and animal life suited to the specific weather and soil conditions of the area they grow in.
Principles of Biodynamic Gardening
Biodynamic gardening emphasizes the use of composts and manures instead of the usual artificial chemicals applied on soil and plants. While it has many things in common with other organic gardening methods, biodynamic gardening is unique in that it uses fermented mineral and herbal preparations (e.g. compost additives, natural field sprays), and an astronomical planting and sowing calendar.
One of the best-known techniques of biodynamic and organic gardening in general is crop rotation, otherwise known as crop sequencing. This is a method that involves the cultivation of a series of crops that are part of different types within the same area or agricultural vicinity. This is done in sequential times or seasons to promote many benefits in crop production. One very good example is the prevention of pathogen and pest build up that is normally takes place when only a single crop type is used.
Crop rotation also creates a specific balance that is vital in avoiding deterioration and reduction of soil nutrients. This balance can be associated with the varying fertility demands of the various crops utilized. Soil structure is also strengthened when deep-rooted and shallow rooted plants coexist in a given land plot.
Crop rotation offers an ideal medium for cultural control. This means that there is adequate defence against pests and diseases that can wreak havoc in a garden. The principle behind this is that the use of constant variation in crop types helps in placing pest population levels to a low percentage. As plants that are members of the same taxonomic family attract similar pathogens, the regular change in the planting location can break down or limit the cycles of pest development.
Besides the use of animal-originated fertilizers (manure), one of the methods extensively used in biodynamic gardening is planting cover crops (green manure) with the goal of improving and enhancing any conditions pertaining to sustainable agriculture. Moreover, cover crops offer an essential way of managing soil fertility, moisture and quality, while they also help battle weeds, pests, and diseases that may inhibit ideal plant growth and crop production.
More Biodynamic Gardening Techniques
Animal life in biodynamic gardening includes mainly useful insects and earthworms. In the past, the use of earthworms and their castings or excretions in promoting plant growth had been widespread. These days, more and more gardeners and agriculturists are reverting back to the old, organic and chemicals-free mode of gardening.
Putting earthworms into gardens and plant plots has become a standard in ensuring that plants will grow better and healthier. Earthworms take care of loosening the damp soil, transporting rich nutrients from the topsoil to the subsoil and making burrows that could facilitate further entry and circulation of air and water into the soil.
Vermicompost has been observed to free cabbage, pepper and tomato from savage and harmful pests like aphids, mealy bugs and caterpillars. Though the exact scientific reasons for the events are still yet to be determined, experts suggest that it is because vermicomposts are rich in highly essential nutrients that help vegetable cops become stress resistant and eventually unattractive to pests.
To Sum Up…
A garden is able to produce or come with a certain result geared to positivity if allowed to. This can only happen when the proper resources are manipulated accordingly.
Due to climate changes and natural calamities erosion may occur that may lead to the destruction of soil components and quality. Now, biodynamic techniques of gardening aim to boost the defensive mechanisms of the soil and increase its vitality and richness. This will eventually lead to the formation of even more fine soil structures that will produce high quality flowers and crops, while promoting a healthy and sustainable gardening model.
The unique facet of biodynamic gardening is that it teaches soil handling and care as a significant way of life by building a relationship with nature. It helps forge a strong connection that can truly lead to massive changes on the quality and benefits of crops and flowers. Moreover, it brings the practitioner in a certain oneness with the land, a land that will solidify his very existence in this world.