Under biodynamic principles, a farm is treated as a single vital entity. The farmer works to create balance and harmony between the different elements, while restoring the soil’s micro-activity.
Certified organic producers do not use pesticides, herbicides or artificial fertilisers. Soil fertility is built up with organic matter, including manure and compost. Weeds and insect pests are managed by traditional methods as well as integrated pest management systems.
It is certified in the same way as organic agriculture, and biodynamic products are commonly seen in supermarkets as well as specialty health stores. Biodynamic farmers must meet the same stringent guidelines as organic farmers – and in addition they must use the special biodynamic preparations which form the basis of this approach to agriculture.
Biodynamics goes further than organics by taking into account the invisible world. ‘Biodynamics is fundamentally about building life energy, both in the soil and the plant.’ says Lynette. ‘In conventional agriculture, soil is treated as a medium in which plants are held upright. Fertilisers are used to add nutrition. But in biodynamics, the life of the soil is critical. Enlivened soils produce vitalised food of the highest nutritional value.’
‘Biodynamics uses the same methods as organic farming to restore the soil – but importantly, it also uses the unique biodynamic preparations to stimulate the microbial activity of the soil and balance life forces in the soil and atmosphere.’
Farmers and gardeners will gain improved taste and nutrition by growing produce biodynamically, according to Lynette.
‘Biodynamic produce (is better in minerals than conventional produce), has higher mineral content,’ she says. ‘The most noticeable difference is in the vitality of the produce and its aroma and taste. You can measure those differences with your own senses.’