At Stirring Soil Farm, we practice Biodynamics. Developed by Dr. Rudolf Steiner, Biodynamic agriculture reconnects us, as humans, with the Earth, it’s natural cycles, and our community. The soil as a living organism needs to be nourished and cultivated. The nine Biodynamic preparations made from fermented plants, minerals, and cow manure energizes the life in the soil. After breaking ground on two acres of fallow pasture in June 2016, we applied these Biodynamic preparations as well as compost to begin to restore the microbial communities throughout the different layers of soil.
The North American Maria Thun Biodynamic Calendar serves as our guide to cultivate our vegetables, flowers, and pastures to the rhythm of the natural world. The position of the moon, Earth, and other planets all affect the way the plants behave, and we plan accordingly. Moving from leaf days, root days, fruit days, and flower days, the Maria Thun Biodynamic Calendar directs our work to have the most impact on the plants and land. In addition, our planting cycles also follow this order to maintain the fertility and structure of the soil.
We source our seeds primarily from certified organic companies. If that is not available, then we will source from Non-GMO Project certified companies. To maintain diversity, almost all of our seeds are open pollinated heirloom varieties.
Maintaining the health of the soil also benefits our pest management plan. By increasing the amount of trace minerals and microbial life in the soil, our plants are more disease and pest resistant. Row cover is used to protect from insects in the field and a fermented nettle tea is used for additional fertility and as a pest deterrent. Only in extreme cases will we use OMRI listed products for pest management.