Hey guys! How much knowledge have you acquired since our last series? Remember, knowledge is indispensable for a successful farmer. To learn more about knowledge as it relates to Bio-intensive agriculture, a click on this link gets you informed.
This week, however, we will take a deep-dive into history. How well do you know the origin of organic agriculture? Well, SAHE Foundation as a tradition, has chronicled the pioneers of sustainable organic agriculture for you. Therefore, RELAX! as you take yourself on an insightful ride through this week’s series.
In this study, we are learning about some of the fathers who inspired this journey (organic agriculture) and who had helped with the race over the years as well as those who inspired the word ‘Bio-intensive’. So, let’s get started!
Rudolf Steiner is the father of Biodynamic agriculture. He initiated the Biodynamic agricultural movement.
Biodynamic agriculture is a form of alternative agriculture that is very similar to organic farming. It involves various historic concepts drawn from the Steiner’s ideas.
Biodynamic techniques are used all over the world and it is higher than organic farming. Research revealed that if a farmer is yet to have organic certification, he/ she cannot be a certified Biodynamic farmer, which means that it is a bit stricter than organic.
Biodynamic also transcends just mere farming in that it requires the farmer’s mind, reflection, and instinct.
Take for instance, in India for a farmer to be inducted into the Biodynamic association, he/she must, at least, have a seven-year experience as a certified organic farmer.
Next on the list is Lord Northbourne who is the father of organic farming. He also coined the concept of organic farming.
For him, he sees a farm as an organism, and that is the reason why he is called the father of organic farming.
In 1940, Northbourne wrote a book where he described a holistic and ecologically-balanced approach to farming.
Later, he wrote on “chemical versus organic farming”. This particular publication was trailed by mixed reactions which led to face-offs with 3 giant chemical companies.
In his 1940 book, he also warned that we (farmers) might be making improper use of the soil, this makes me to wonder if someone in 1940 warned of unhealthy use of our soil, you should know what is obtainable nowadays. This is over 80 years since he wrote his book, meaning that the soil we have now is totally damaged. We need a change, a serious change.
SIR ALBERT HOWARD
Sir Albert Howard is another great pioneer that we will be talking about. He wrote a beautiful quote as follows “the wheel of life is made up of two processes, growth and decay, the one is the counterpart of the other”.
Sir Albert is known to be the father of composting, he actually introduced the journey of compost making and developed the modern way of composting.
As a writer, he wrote a lot of books with focus on compost making, and soil health. He well knew that without a healthy soil, healthy plant and people are a mirage. Therefore, he emphasized more on the importance of maintaining soil humus and keeping the soil moist. He also accentuated the role of soil flora and fauna (microbes) in all his books. He is one father that must never be forgotten.
Mosanobu Fukuoka is another wonderful father that we cannot but talk about in this journey. According to him “the ultimate goal of farming is not the growing of crops, but the cultivation and perfection of human beings” whaoo! I so much love the quote.
He also wrote a lot of good books and is celebrated as the father of natural farming. Fukuoka developed the radical note-tail, no herbicide organic method for growing grains.
Alan Chadwick is the father of Bio-intensive. He started the French intensive system from where he transformed the system of gardening.
Chadwick wrote many books and trained a lot of young people. One of them (trainees) developed the topic we are going to be looking at in coming weeks, Grow Bio-intensive.
He trained John Jevons who believed that with a small piece of land, we can grow all our food and get all the needed calories. Jevons maintained that “it is not just about planting or gardening; it is about calories”. He often asked a question of “what calories are you getting from your food?”
It is so important that a farmer/ gardener plans his/her garden according to the calory intake, based on what your body will take. WHAT? Interesting? Exactly, the journey into Grow Biointensive is so much interesting, therefore, ANTICIPATE!
However, to whet your appetite while waiting, during the period, we will unveil different areas, principles and information about Grow Bio-intensive that many channels will not necessarily share. We will go in-depth into all of these topics for you to learn. So, fasten your belt and brace-up to learn.
Overall, the one thing that I will like to leave us with for this week is the fact that it often takes about 50 to 200 years to discover a problem or weakness in a farming method.
For example, now everybody is calling for sustainable farming, we are all shouting that the food system has to change. These are problems that have lingered for the past 50 to 200 years. Now, we are seeing a sudden shift gradually because it takes those number of years to discover the problem. For you, what problem are you currently seeing in your food system? In the current farming method that surrounds us, what problems have you discovered that you want us to talk about or you want to share with us. Please be free to reach us.