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Biodynamic Preparations

Oak Bark Preparation

“…not all, but a large number of plant diseases can be alleviated just by means of a rational manuring. What is needed is just that the manuring adds calcium to the soil. For calcium to have a healing effect, however, it has to be calcium from something living; we cannot evade the organic realm….

 “Now, one plant that contains plenty of calcium is the oak. Seventy-seven percent of its substance consists of finely distributed calcium. And oak bark, in particular represents a kind of intermediate product between the plant and the living earth element, in the same sense as I already described the kinship between bark and the living earth. Of the many forms in which calcium can appear, the calcium structure of oak bark is the most ideal. Calcium…. creates order when the etheric body is working too strongly, so that astrality cannot influence whatever organic entity is involved…. when we want a rampant etheric development to contract in a beautiful and regular manner…then we need to use calcium in the particular form in which it is found in oak bark.

“…we collect oak bark…. Then we chop it up until it is a crumb-like consistency, and put it into a skull from any one of our domestic animals…and finally close up the skull, preferably with a piece of bone. Next we place the skull in a relatively shallow hole in the ground, cover it with loose peat, and set up some pipe or gutter so that as much rainwater as possible flows into the hole…. Then add some kind of plant matter that will decay, so that the oak bark in its bony container lies in this organic muck for the whole winter, or better still for the whole autumn and winter…. When this material is added to your manure pile, it will truly provide the forces to prevent or arrest harmful plant diseases.”
Article Repost from R. Steiner, Agriculture, pp. 100-101, tr. C.E. Creeger and M. Gardner.

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What did Rudolf Steiner mean by full Moon and new Moon?

The evolution of language is something that tremendously varies depending the time and place. And, now even technology is changing the way we speak and how we describe the world around us. Some languages can take hundreds of years to evolve. Others have a hard time keeping up with their own evolution.

There are now some corporations that take advantage of this and create digital applications to get around certain laws to get what they want, simply because the technology is revolutionizing faster than the government can.    

The Celestial Planting Calendar team is fully engaged in sharing the teachings of Rudolf Steiner, and marrying them with current biodynamic research is very simple. However, we have asked ourselves, “Does full Moon and new Moon mean the same in our present time as it meant more than 90 years ago when Steiner gave the Agricultural Course? Both language and extensive knowledge of Rudolf Steiner plays a role here.

 “An image is worth a thousand words,” is a very common phrase, and it is also the way Rudolf Steiner tackled this issue in the “Fourth Discussion” after the Lecture Eight in Koberwitz the 16th of June, 1924:
When you talk about full Moon and new Moon, do you mean just the day of the full or new Moon, or do you mean the time shortly before and after as well?
Consider it new Moon approximately from the time the Moon looks like this (Drawing 25). You see the Moon looking like this, and then it disappears. Consider it full Moon from the time when the Moon is present as a narrow crescent, like this, and then disappears. Always about 12-14 days.  (1)

This explains why some biodynamic researchers got better germination results three to five days before full Moon and not two days before, why? Because most of the literature does not take into account the “narrow crescent” picture that Rudolf Steiner describes. As far as I know he didn’t mention an exact hour to describe in words new or full moon; he rather describes pictures in the sky that “look like” what he means.

Similar results have been obtained by biodynamic researchers when they talk about spraying 501 the day before (or even up to two days before) the Moon opposite Saturn instead of doing it the actual day of the opposition. For these reasons, from now on I will include these recommendations in our calendar.

  1. Steiner, R. (1993). Agriculture. Tr. C. E. Creeger and M. Gardner.

Article By Cesar Gomez, 2016

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BD501 Application Do's & Don'ts

Article written by Cesar Gomez, 2015
Book by Ehrenfried PfeifferSince the influence of prep 501 is on the assimilative processes, it is not applied until the plant is growing well. As long as the risk of night frosts last in spring it not most be used, except in specially sheltered spots ( greenhouse I guess). Spraying maybe begun as soon as the plant has taken root, the first pairs of leaves have appeared, and the weather promises rapid growth. A second dose may be given from two to four weeks later. Prep 501 must not be applied to plants in flower, except in the case of those plants that bear fruit and flower at the same time, such as tomatoes, cucumbers, etc.
It is specially effective in promoting growth at the leaf-and-stem stage before flowering begins. In the case of fruit trees whose blossom comes before their leaves, it must of course not be given until blossoming is over. 
This prep has a kind of balancing effect. That is to say, it preserves a nice balance in growth. It speeds up slow or retarded growth and assimilation and slows down growth that is to rapid. Several doses need to be administered, therefore, in wet years when plants tend to shoot up to quickly. (page 36)
501 may not be given where there has been no previous application of prep 500. 
"Own experience and observation will form your own methods of applying and combining the preps". This will be governed by local conditions, the kinds of plants grown, and the climate. ( page 37)

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BD500 for Roots & Seed Germination


Book by Ehrenfried PfeifferArticle written by Cesar Gomez, 2015

Is related to the processes that have to do with the formation of roots, with germination processes, and with the precedent processes in the soil (page 29). 

Prep 500 has another special use, that of seed-time. Seeds can be immersed for an hour in a solution of it or can be sprayed with it, and then dried again. This causes vigorous germination. Potatoes, before planting, are moistened for two hours. Thus it is advisable before transplanting to sprinkle the trench or hole with a solution of 500, or at least to dip the roots of the plants therein. This holds good for trees also. (page 32) 

Generally speaking, prep 500 should be used in spring and autumn and should be sprayed upon the land before sowing; at the time, that is, of the final plowing or harrowing or else on the winter furrow. Prep 500 has proven particularly effective when sprayed towards evening, so that it gets washed into the ground by dew or night moisture. On the other hand it should not be sprayed during or immediately after rain, nor at midday when the sun is powerful. 

No fixed rule can be given, such us, for instance harrow on 10 March and add prep 500. Everything depends on the state of the vegetation. It is this that makes such exacting demands on the powers of observation of the biodynamic husbandman, for he may not act mechanically nor according to rule, but always in harmony with the life-conditions around him. (page 30, 31)

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