Biodynamic Farming-Working With Mother Nature

By into the rustic - 7:25 AM

Listen To Your Mama

Nowadays more and more people want to grow their own food, raise their own animals, and get more in touch with nature in as holistic and organic a way as possible. A life as free from chemicals as you can get is the path we should all work towards. 

There is this concept out there for all of us purists called Biodynamic Farming that is just the answer to these needs. It shouldn't even be this nouveau "AH-HA!" type of discovery, Biodynamic Farming should be ascertained simply by using good ol' common sense and looking at the world around us. 

Did Mother Nature need a farmer or a herder or a breeder armed with herbicides and pesticides and growth hormones to get everything to grow and thrive? Nope. So why do we need to? Because we have gone against the very principles and rules of nature. We tried to make nature work the way WE want it to. Well, aren't we just special...

Forgotten Farming

Biodynamic Farming is an amazing concept that we as a people, have moved away from completely. Gone are the days of traditional farm life- now we have big agricultural and livestock companies that produce one main crop or one specific animal type on huge tracts of farmland, using pesticides and other chemicals to create a "clean product".

This is our biggest downfall in farming. Producing only one product en masse by whatever means necessary. THAT is why we need those chemicals because Mother Nature was taken out of the equation. Let me know when you walk into any natural habitat and you only see one of anything and by the droves. Don't worry, I'll wait. Give up? Right! Because it's impossible! 

What we need to bring back for the benefit of our natural ecosystems, our food supply, and our own future as the human race, is traditional farming where an abundance and variety of different foods is produced without the use of chemical interference. Let nature and its biodiversity manage itself perfectly-just as it does in the wild-without us and our advanced science.

Variety is the Spice of Life

When you have a variety of crops, animals, and terrain, you create your own mini-ecosystem that can check and balance itself without the need for damaging and poisonous chemicals. Those elements of our environment will call the others to it. Bugs and birds and different species will start to appear as you create the home and sustenance they need.

As soon as you retreat from nature and chemicals are used, not only are you effectively poisoning the soil and water supply, but you are killing off the pests you wish to be rid of and their natural predator. Some of those pests are needed for the environment we live in to be balanced. If you kill off those pests, you could be removing the food supply for another more beneficial creature. If we were able to create a balanced environment on all farms, the use of chemicals would become obsolete. There is no better manager of nature than Mother Nature herself.

There will always be diseases and pests on your farm, but these can be diminished greatly by creating this Biodynamic environment so that they do not affect your overall production. We can not make Nirvana happen, but we can get pretty close to it.

 If You Build it They Will Come

For everything out there in nature there is not only a cure, but a problem solver. Every year I deal with Aphids that seemingly appear as if out of thin air. Need to get rid of them easily? Ladybugs are one of many bugs that devour them by the thousands. They also love to eat whiteflies and the Colorado Potato Beetle. I get happy whenever I see ladybugs in my garden because I know I've got my own little private bug-eating army helping me out.

Want to attract ladybugs to your garden? Try planting what they crave! Ladybugs love Dill, Fern-Leaf Yellow (or False Foxglove), Basket of Gold (or Golden Tuft Alyssum), and Dandelion

Lacewing is another helpful bug that eats not only aphids, but also whiteflies, leaf hoppers, and mealy bugs. Want to attract them? They also love Dill like the ladybug but will come to dine with you anytime if you plant Coriander, Angelica (a very beneficial herb for your health), or Golden Marguerite (Yellow Chamomile).

The Honeybee is an obvious friend to the farmer, but with the increase in genetically modified plants, The best way to make sure your crops are getting adequately pollinated is by having your own little bee hive on site. The best place for your hive is nestled in between your fruit trees. Trust me, they and you will, you.

Other pollinators that help us are the Butterfly, Moths, Hummingbirds, Wasps, and even Flies. What we need for our little pollinating friends is to plant herb and wildflower gardens right next to your own bee hive on your property. Bees prefer Blue, Purple, White, Orange, and Yellow flowers, as well as sweet fragrances.

All Creatures Great and Small

Now on the other side of the farm, as far as your animals go, it is critical to have a strong variety
of livestock on your farm. You would be amazed at the benefits they not only offer each other, but the soil, your plants, and ultimately your food supply. Turn your chickens out to feed off of the lovelies (ok fly maggots) growing off of your cow's manure. It will reduce the fly population significantly and feed your chickens too.

Or have your grasses grow tall between your fruit trees, or even plant cover crops there, then let the goats or sheep graze there and you will see that their droppings make excellent fertilizer for the soil!

Did you know that pigs make the best rototillers? Have a field that you want turned to plant in? Release your pigs and their snouts will do the work for you, and their waste will give you rich soil for growing.

Raising rabbits? They have a natural symbiotic relationship with baby chicks, and they keep each other healthy and from getting illnesses.

As your farm grows and maintains a wide diversity, so too will your supply of beneficial bugs and rodents. Farm animals benefit your land by what you let grow wild for them to eat and their manure will make your soil turn rich. Take a step back from any obstacle you are dealing with and look to Mother Nature for her wisdom. The answer is there with her.

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