From chaos to clarity via compost


I’ve been wanting to re-connect with my knowledge of growing plants either as nutritious food or abundant flower arrangements to brighten my home, for a few years now.

Building my practice The Relaxation Room has kept me busy, so it's been with enthusiasm, after a chance conversation with a colleague, that i'm taking on an allotment, perfectly timed for the biodynamic gardening course I am now attending for the next few months.

Vivian, from the Biodynamic group at Brantwood Coniston, Ruskin s home overlooking Coniston Water, is a mind of information and gave us an illuminating day learning about soil, compost and the Biodynamic preparations. I found out about the course from the Biodynamic Association newsletter and signed up straight away.

Perfect timing for taking on an allotment although the gathering of material to start my own compost heap will have to wait, i can at least start the biodynamic process as the gardener.

My initial reflections around the differences between the similar organisations such as the Soil Association, RHS - Royal Horticultural Society and Permaculture Association which base their knowledge and practical activities of gardening on environmental factors, the Biodynamic approach brings in the wider aspects of the planetary influences, more aligned with traditional farming techniques. It also highlights the involvement of the gardener themselves, their temperament, their inner qualities. And if we think of ourselves and how our moods can be as changeable as the weather this essential difference is key to the process and is where I can start at least. Looking at my attitude to my piece of the land I have been given the guardianship of.

There is scientific process behind the knowledge although not recognised by regulatory organisations. And why? Mumby jumbo? Totally woo? More because it s like asking a fish to climb a tree or me to ride a unicycle, although given time and encouragement I’m sure I’d succeed where the fish would fail. My point is just because Biodynamic farming doesn’t adhere to some strict codes of gardening practice, the wine industry is a shining example of its essential role in bringing our soil back to life.

And that is what I took from today. How Biodynamic practice is enlivening the Earth, the soil and enriching the plants grown in it.

As a Weleda Wellbeing Advisor I know that’s why our products seem to have a dramatic impact on my clients health and wellbeing. Their goodness has been grown not manufactured.

So as my friends in India say, shanti shanti slowly slowly, my garden will be grown, and it will grow biodynamically

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