Biodynamics (“biological-dynamics”) is a method of organic agriculture that can be applied to any farm, garden or horticultural enterprise by following a series of practical steps. It is based on the teachings of scientist and philosopher, Rudolf Steiner.
The New Zealand Bio Dynamic Farming and Gardening Association (Inc) is a membership-based organisation promoting biodynamic methods. We’re passionate about the quality of our food, the welfare of our animals and responsible stewardship of our environment.
Most of our members are individuals, although we also welcome legally-incorporated bodies such as companies, registered charitable trusts and incorporated societies.
Explore below and the other pages in this section to learn more about our story, what we do, and how to join us.
In the early 1920s, a number of European farmers were deeply worried about signs of agriculture in decline. These signs included increasing soil infertility, loss of food quality and reduced vigour in livestock.
The farmers approached Dr Steiner for advice. He responded with a series of lectures that introduced biodynamic concepts.
In New Zealand, biodynamic methods were first used in 1928 at Havelock North and the Bio Dynamic Farming and Gardening Association was born in 1939.
The series of practical steps emphasise building soil fertility and are carefully tailored to the particular property. They include:
- Using biodynamic sprays to stimulate biological activity in the soil and improve retention of nutrients, such as animal wastes
- Stocking with several different animal species to vary grazing patterns and reduce pasture-borne parasites
- Widening the range of pasture species
- Planting trees for multiple purposes
- Crop rotation designs including the use of green manures to enhance soil fertility and control weeds and plant pests
- Recycling organic wastes, where possible, by large scale composting
- Changing from chemical pest control to prevention strategies based on good plant and animal nutrition and careful cultivar selection
You’ll find more information about biodynamics in our FAQ section.
Taking a holistic view
Biodynamics is a systems approach, where the farm, vineyard, orchard or garden is viewed as a living whole and each activity affects everything else.
Management is based on the grower’s own careful observations, plus the results of tests and analyses.
In this way, modern technology and traditional knowledge marry to form a highly-effective method that’s unique to each location.
What are the advantages?
Biodynamics uses very limited external inputs and re-uses most on-farm waste, so it has a low impact on the environment.
It also provides an economical way of farming because most of the costs are met at the time they are incurred.
One of the most easily-seen and dramatic benefits of biodynamic practice is the exceptional quality of the produce: flavour, appearance and keeping quality are all enhanced.
Many of our members can relate stories about the marvelous feedback they receive from consumers and buyers.
The international trademark Demeter is your guarantee that produce is grown biodynamically.
- Biodynamic Case Studies
- Biodynamic Preparations
- Biodynamics in Schools
- Cosmic Influences
- Cows + Ethical Calf Raising
- Farm as an Organism
- Growing Food
- Harvest Magazine Article
- Latest News
- Nutrition + Food
- Past Events
- Pest Management
- Stirring + Water + Flowform
- Sustainability + Climate
- Taikura Steiner School Motueka