Bringing Forgotten Soil To Life

Harvest Magazine – Autumn 2018

Jen Speedy tells the tale of transforming soil at Taikura Rudolf Steiner School in Hastings, using biodynamic practices.

Six years ago, our school grounds expanded with the purchase of the neighbouring property – a commercial four-story building surrounded by asphalt car parking areas. On two sides of the newly acquired grounds, edging the building and edging the street, were very sorry, pale, baked, unloved and lifeless strips of gardens supported by a couple of Acer negundo maple trees, a eucalypt and that thorny stalwart, the Eleagnus hedge.

On the third side sat an additional very large asphalt carpark. A contracted company ripped up the asphalt for us. On half the area, topsoil was smoothed out and grass seed blasted on – and presto, the existing playing field had been extended.

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An Urban Farm Grows Community

Harvest Article – Autumn 2018

Some innovative projects in Auckland are introducing healthy food-growing practices to new audiences. One of them is Katrina’s Kitchen Garden, an urban biodynamic farm operating out of West Auckland. Co-director Katrina Wolff tells their story.

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An Amazing Year in the Greenhouse

Harvest Article – Spring 2016

Anne Dodds’ greenhouse is at Te Awaiti on the Wairarapa Coast. A visit to her garden is part of the coastal walk for many people.

What a season! Day after day this past summer, I would walk into my greenhouse and be amazed.

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The New Generation of Biodynamic Gardeners

Kaitlyn is  18 years old and is John Paul College’s environmental captain in Rotorua. She has a huge passion for growing nutrient rich food from seed and diverting waste from the landfill by making compost. She has recently become a member of Biodynamics New Zealand and shares with us her passion for gardening, sustainability and visions of what her future holds.

This is an excerpt from the Spring 2021 issue of Harvests, to have access to the full article, and many other perks become a member of Biodynamics New Zealand here https://biodynamic.org.nz/biodynamic-association/joining-the-association

What is it about biodynamics that interests you?

What interests me about Biodynamics is that the garden and every single part of that garden environment is looked at from a holistic viewpoint. This is very important, as nothing in nature is separate. They are all interconnected. Just like we are to Papatuanuku. Which is why I love how growers use ‘waste’ and plants from their land/garden to improve the health of their soil and therefore the health of the food they produce and the health of the ecosystem. I find this truly amazing because nowadays lots of growers depend on external inputs in order to grow food, which isn’t sustainable. I believe if we can return to biodynamic methods, then we will be able to even further slow down the greenhouse effect and find an even stronger connection to our environment. 

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Into the Soil: An interview with Mattias Olssen about biodynamics and film making.

I had the wonderful opportunity to talk to Swedish film maker and podcaster Mattias Olssen about his documentary film ‘Into the Soil’ for the Spring issue of Harvests. He is the creator of the multimedia project called Campfire Stories, where he interviews people in his community pursuing sustainable and sometimes alternative lifestyles.  In this film he documents the philosophical approach of the biodynamic farmer Brigid LeFevre, who grew up in a Camphill community and now runs a small biodynamic farm where she grows supplies to make some of the best Kimchi in Europe.

To read the full interview and have access to Harvests Magazine, become a member of Biodynamics New Zealand here

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Biodynamics In Action at Ipuwai Farm

Harvest Article – Spring 2021

Below is an excerpt from the Spring 2021 issue of Harvests Magazine, written by Rachael Ewings. In Harvests, we share biodynamic stories from around Aotearoa, New Zealand and beyond. To get your hands on a copy of Harvests – and loads of other perks – become a member of Biodynamics New Zealand.

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A Biodynamic Cathedral

Harvests Magazine Article – Summer 2017

Andy Black gave a wonderful presentation at the 2017 annual Biodynamic Association Conference about growing great biodynamic food “in a plastic bag” (a greenhouse) at Hohepa’s Poraiti Farm between 2009 and 2016.

His presentation was called “The biodynamic greenhouse: A desert or a cathedral of life?”

Here’s the article written in the Summer 2017 Harvests Magazine

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