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Biodynamic Compost Starter

Biodynamic Compost Starter or BD Compost Starter is a compost inoculant now more popularly known as biodynamic compost preparations (BD compost preparations) and is only available to be bought commercially from the Josephine Porter Institute.

Invented by Dr. Ehrenfired Pfeiffer, disciple of philosopher Rudolf Steiner, the founder of Anthroposphy and Biodynamic Agriculture, BD Compost Starter is one of the founding and essential products of Biodynamic Agriculture, with a unique spiritual and scientific preparation style that makes it quite different from other compost starters.

With the whole farm viewed as a living entity, everything in it is considered to be an integral part of this self-contained organism, complete with its very own individuality, emphasizing integration between livestock and crops, the recycling of nutrients, the well being and health of crops as well as maintaining the soil.

Based on Steiners prescription of eight different soil preparations to be used and the details on how to use them in creating quality humus, Dr. Pfeiffer innovated Biodynamic Agriculture with his BD Compost Starter.

The prepared substances are numbered 500 through 507; numbers 500 and 501 are used for preparing the fields, while 502, 503, 504, 505, 506 and 507 are all used for preparing the compost itself.

While rather complicated, somewhat extensive to explain here, or to be done by a beginner in Biodynamic Agriculture, it is both a fun and spiritually uplifting experience to actually create Biodynamic preparations oneself if taken the time to learn. In the end, when push does come to shove, every biodynamic farmer must choose for themselves what works best.

After Steiner released a series of eight lectures, Spiritual Foundations for the Renewal of Agriculture, he indicated several different preparations to be used in agriculture and these are what are now referred to as Biodynamic Preparations (BD preparations).

Instead of bringing straight chemicals into agriculture through such things as ammonia or urea, these chemicals are introduced through products such as manure or rock phosphate.

Beyond the Cartesian thinking of scientists from a mechanistic view of the world and physical reality that thinks along the lines of traditional soil chemistry; Biodynamic preparations also looks to understand cosmic forces that might also influence the preparation of soils and humus on a non-visible or esoteric level, much like gravity or magnetism, which cannot be observed by the naked eye, yet are observable.

Biodynamic Compost Starter (BD Compost Starter) ultimately failed economically, as it was not something that could be readily spread with the common fertilizer spreader used by farmers at the time of its release and as this technical difficulty could not be overcome it was carried on almost single-mindedly by Josephine Porter in the United States for nearly 30 years until her death in 1984.

See also:
Biodynamic Farming & Compost Preparation

Our Book Review:
Principles of Biodynamic Spray And Compost Preparations




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