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Biodynamic Preps & Compost

Soil health is key to plant vitality! We want our plants to be packed with good health themselves so when we harvest and dry them we know we are bringing you the best that Mother Nature and our farm can offer!

Biodynamic founder Rudolf Steiner described nine biodynamic preparations, called preps, which consist of mineral, plant or animal manure. These are usually fermented and then applied in very small proportions to compost piles, to the soil or sprayed directly onto the plants. Creating these preps sounds almost mystical however it is proven to not only work but to be based in the new spiritual scientific approach to working with the earth.

The original biodynamic (BD) preparations are numbered 500-507. The BD 500 Prep and the BD 501 Prep are used as field sprays to promote rich soil, root development and stimulate plant growth. The BD Preps 502- 507 are applied to the manure and compost piles to direct and enhance the fermenting and decomposing process.

Biodynamic Prep 500

This preparation is the cornerstone of biodynamic farming! The prep is made in the fall by inserting cow manure into cow horns, burying those horns for 6 months, then digging them up and removing the contents. The manure has fermented in the horns and is now an earthy sweet smelling and bursting with rich, soil enhancing nutrients! ¼ cup of 500 is added to 3 gallons of pure water then stirred for an hour to reach its full potential. Stirring simulates the earth's rotation and adds "energy" to the finished prep.

Very small amounts are then sprayed over the farms soil and almost immediately go to work. BD 500 improves the very soil structure and microbiological activity of the earth by stimulating the soil's own bacteria and life source. This promotes soil richness and in turn enables the nutrients to enter the plant roots for healthy plant growth.

Biodynamic Prep 501

Finely ground quartz is the basis for this dynamic preparation. The quartz is made into a paste and again packed inside a cow horn to ferment. These horns are buried over the summer and dug up in the fall. The paste has fermented, matured and is so intense that it is used homeopathically, taking only ½ teaspoon stirred into three gallons of pure water to affect an acre of crops!

This quartz radiating liquid is sprayed on the leaves of the plants and stimulates, regulates and promotes healthy growth. The fine spray is a light catcher as if there were hundreds of small quartz reflecting crystals on each plant capturing the sunlight! In the often over cast skies of western Oregon, our plants relish this sun catching help, as it helps stimulate photosynthesis.

Biodynamic Prep 502 - Yarrow

Made from the Yarrow flower this preparation stimulates the potassium, silica and selenium in the soil bacteria and helps sulphur combine with other substances. This helps plants attract trace elements for the best nutritional value. The prep helps remedy flowering and fruiting weaknesses, strengths the plant against insect attack and is important for reproduction and general healthy growth. Used homeopathically, one teaspoon treats 10 tons of compost!

Biodynamic Prep 503 - Chamomile

Made from the Chamomile flower this preparation stabilizes nitrogen within the compost and increases soil life that in turn stimulates plant growth. By retaining nitrogen and calcium, the prep helps to strengthen the plant's regenerative life activity. It also promotes a good breakdown of proteins in the compost to humic substances which are the major organic constituents of soil. Used homeopathically, one teaspoon treats 10 tons of compost!

Biodynamic Prep 504 - Stinging Nettle

This preparation is made from the whole stinging Nettle plant before it flowers. The prep helps in decomposition by working on the nitrogen content of the compost. It aids chlorophyll formation and stimulates iron, potassium, calcium, magnesium and sulphur activity in the soil. Stinging Nettle promotes soil health, providing plants with the individual nutrition components they need and thus creating more nutrients in the plants themselves. Used homeopathically, one teaspoon treats 10 tons of compost!

Biodynamic Prep 505 - Oak Bark

Made from small pieces of Oak bark, this prep helps calcium and phosphorus work its way into the earth. It provides healing qualities to help combat harmful plant diseases like fungus. Extended use of the Oak bark will help to raise the ph of the soil eliminating the need to add lime. Used homeopathically, one teaspoon treats 10 tons of compost!

Biodynamic Prep 506 - Dandelion

Created from the dried Dandelion flower, this prep stimulates the potassium/silica bacteria in the soil and enables it to work more effectively with the growth forces of the plant. This is an aid in the flowering and fruiting processes of the plant. This prep also stimulates the magnesium, boron and selenium soil activity. Used homeopathically, one teaspoon treats 10 tons of compost!

Biodynamic Prep 507 - Valerian

This preparation varies from the above in that it uses the fresh Valerian flowers to make a tincture. 1 part flower is diluted with 4 parts pure water and allowed to ferment. A teaspoon of this is then added to 2 gallons of pure water and used to spray the whole compost heap. It forms a blanket of warmth over the entire pile! It accomplishes this by stimulating the phosphorus process and aiding the phosphorus-activating bacteria in the soil. If sprayed onto fruit blossoms in spring it can actually provide protection from a late frost! Earthworms love this prep!

At Oregon's Wild Harvest we are Seriously Organic! Through the biodynamic process and its soil enhancing preparations, we create the perfect balance in our fields for plants to reach their full life potential...naturally! It all starts with our soil and the care we take to nourish it. After all dirt is dirt, but soil has soul!

It took our company two years to transition into a certified biodynamic farm. Today, the farm not only grows certified organic herbs, but certified biodynamic ones as well! Our motivation for doing this stems from our philosophy to naturally heal the body and Earth. And, when looking at the foundation of biodynamic farming, it seemed a perfect fit!

The farm is basically viewed as a single organism that is capable of meeting its own needs, without the assistance of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. Dr. Rudolf Steiner, the founder of biodynamic farming, thought that the key to good health - of people and planet - was total sustainability in agriculture.

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