Canterbury Autumn Biodynamics Festival

Come and enjoy a weekend of observation, education and celebration.

Biodynamics New Zealand supported by Kete Ora Trust presents three days of the best in biodynamic principles for food, wine, farming, animal health, pest control with Marinus LaRooij, Ian Henderson, Peter and Gill Bacchus and facilitated by Su Hoskin.
We look forward to seeing you there and thank you for your support of this regional fundraiser.

Please share this opportunity to learn and grow with Biodynamics New Zealand and all non-members (including lapsed members) who join us for the weekend will receive one year’s digital member for free! This means you get the members 15% discount too.

Dates and Locations – full programme below and downloadable pdf here.
Friday 9 April at Little Owl Biodynamic Farm
Saturday 10 April at Milmore Downs and Black Estate Vineyard
Sunday 11 April at Black Estate Vineyard and Netherwood Vineyard

View the individual workshops by clicking on the images below.

Members receive a 15% discount by using the coupon code ‘member’ at checkout :
Goetheanum Conference Header

Goetheanum Conference

Breathe with the climate crisis
ecologically – socially – spiritually.

How can we breathe in the climate crisis? How can one understand the climate crisis on an ecological, a spiritual and a social level? Can the earth even bear my footprint?

The conference will take place digitally in 2021 and will be jointly organized by the Youth Section and the Agriculture Section. In the digital space we want to enable exchange and real encounters and look forward to many participants from all over the world!

February 11-14, 2021 Digital conference.
Visit website here to enrol.
You will have the choice to view the site in English.

Open the flyer for more information here.

500FootNote – Our Members Newletter

500 FOOTNOTE Kia Ora koutou We wish you all a very safe and happy solstice and may the new year bring you lots of amazing biodynamic produce. 

Thank you to Juliet Batten for sharing her work with us at this auspicious time.

Te Maruaroa O Te Raumati: Summer Solstice, Monday 21 December

The signature sign of summer solstice in Te Ika A Māui, the North Island is the crimson flowering of the Pohutukawa trees that fringe the coastline. Dancing against the blue sea, they announce the promise of a sunny season with its pilgrimages to the beach for swimming, fishing, water sports and simple relaxation. In Te Wai Pounamu, the South Island it is the crimson flowers of rata that are associated with the pleasure of summer.

Summer solstice marks the passing of the sixth month when the sun has gained strength and all things greet Rangi and Papa. In both Māori and European traditions summer solstice was a time of hard work.

Resource: Juliet Batten. Celebrating the Southern Seasons. Page reference 149 New Commissioning Editor

We are looking for a Commissioning Editor for Harvests Magazine.

Please view role outline here. 

Is this you or someone you know? Please email Josie – 

We look forward to hearing from you.
  Thank you for your wonderful support of the workshops in the last couple of months. We’ve really enjoyed hosting you and working with many of you.

The photos below are from the Canterbury horn lifting day in November. Saturn and Jupiter
Star gazers are in for a treat leading up to Christmas. Jupiter and Saturn are about to touch (to the naked eye) at roughly 7:20am on the 22nd December. It will be light by then but they will be getting closer each night. If we get some clear nights then go outside and have a look. Apart from the moon, they will be the brightest things in the sky and will look like one big bright planet soon. They (we) move from east to west. This is the closest that they have been in the sky for 800 years. 
Fun fact – Jupiter takes 12 years to hoon around the sun. It takes Saturn 29.4 years. Biodynamics book store
Our online book store has been restocked with great gifts for any season. Shop here.

  Te Mahi Oneone Hua Parakore: A Māori Soil Sovereignty and Wellbeing Handbook
edited by Jessica Hutchings and Jo Smith. 
Order online here or Order via invoice:

Soil health and security are key components of our wellbeing. Even so, soil is faced with many environmental challenges under the current iteration of capitalism. A paradigm shift is needed to encourage care for this resource. In te ao Māori, soil is taonga. It is also whanaunga – it holds ancestral connections and is the root of tūrangawaewae and whakapapa. It is the source of shelter, kai and manaakitanga.

Te Mahi Oneone Hua Parakore: A Māori Soil Sovereignty and Wellbeing Handbook shines a light on Māori relationships with soil, as well as the connections between soil and food security, and frames these links within the wider discourse of tino rangatiratanga from a variety of Māori perspectives. Through a range of essays, profiles and recipes, it seeks to promote wellbeing and elevate the mana of the soil by drawing on the hua parakore Māori organics framework as a means for understanding these wide-ranging, diverse and interwoven relationships with soil. The Energetic Activities of Biodynamic Agriculture  
Based on 8 lectures given by Dr Rudolf Steiner June 7 to June 16 1924
Issued in 1938 From the shorthand notes of Dr L Kolisko Edited by Glen Atkinson (2011) 

We hope you enjoy this re-edit of the Agriculture Course, highlighting and separating the two main conversations in the course the primary Energetic activities of Spirit Astral Etheric and Physical ; and the Physical Formative Forces.

Available on order here.
  Peppering Workshop, this Saturday 19 December. Register with Christine – or 0211796471 Office hours and prep distribution over December and January
The last prep dispatch for the year is Monday 21 December 2020 and we start back again on Tuesday 5 January 2021. The Office is closed Tuesday 22 December 2020 until Tuesday 5 January 2021.

Thank you all for your continued support. Our Association is going through a transition with new members, a new team and a new Council and we are looking forward to sharing so much more with you in 2021.
In radiant heights
Where, glistening in the sun,
The friendly dragonflies are
Flitting out rays of warmth
Which blend into the space around,
There, tarry thou, my soul;
For, thinking of me, they weave
From sadness, strength.
Already I can feel
How they are sensing me;
How warmth streams from them,
Permeating me.
The spirit dissolves
In cosmic interweaving,
The earthly heaviness
Into light of the future.
~Rudolf Steiner

Josie Rainer | Secretary 
PO Box 356 | Martinborough 5741 | New Zealand
Mobile: +64-27-779-2252   Copyright © 2020 Bio Dynamic Farming and Gardening Assn in NZ, All rights reserved.

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Dieter Proebst and James Millton workshop

Thank you for joining us on this wonderful day and night. We look forward to seeing you again.

A pre Christmas workshop and celebratory feast in Marlborough with two of the country’s prominent Biodynamics practitioners and educators

Biodynamic Preparations: Why? How? & When? With Hans Mulder

Thank you for all your interest in this event. We were over subscribed on the day and hope to hold another event with Hans in 2021

Winter Warmer Hui

Biodynamic Winter Warmer & Hui

Join us Saturday 16 August at Taruna to re-imagine, refresh and reshape the learning conversations of your biodynamic community.

Please register by 7th August for catering purposes Cost: $15 including morning, afternoon tea and lunch.

Winter Warmer Hui 2020

Notice of AGM | Call for Nominations for National Council

Notice of 2020 AGM of the Biodynamic Farming and Gardening Association | Call for Nominations for National Council and Remits

As many of our members know, an invigorating Biodynamic Conference was being planned for this Winter Solstice by a great subcommittee of collaborators. Unfortunately due to Covid-19, the 2020 Biodynamic Conference has been cancelled. The AGM must and still will take place, most likely online. We look forward to when we are able to gather in the future.

Notice of AGM: 21 June, Winter Solstice

Date:        Sunday, 21st June 2020, Winter Solstice morning
Time:        9:00am
Place:      Rehua Marae, Otautahi, Christchurch

*Due to Covid-19 restrictions, it is likely a physical gathering may not be possible. A physical place is stated here to satisfy the letter of the Rules.

We invite you to the Annual General Meeting of your Association. This is a chance to hear where the Association is at financially, and feed back to the Council. Ample time will be given to allow membership feedback. We are looking at ways we can still include some talks.

At the time of this notification, should Covid-19 restrict us from gathering safely, the contingency plan advised by Charities Commission, is to hold the AGM via online or telecommunications conference call with members. Confirmation of the place will be updated and notified closer to the time, should this become possible in respect of guidance from Government.

In which case, you will be able to gather with fellow members, from the comfort of your own home on Winter Solstice morning. Unprecedented times call for unprecedented responses, and we thank you for being reasonable and in supportive spirit as the Council works hard to adapt. For any questions, please send thru to

We also invite any key points of feedback ahead of the AGM, so the Council can respond accordingly at the time. Please send to

More details including the venue, National Council nominees and voting papers will be published via FiveHundredFootnote and in the coming month, followed by an Agenda.

Call for Nominations for National Council

There are 5 positions available for nomination for National Council. The current Council is gearing the Association up for renewed growth that with the help of a professional team, will put it back on a path to re-vitalised, re-enchanted and steady, sustainable growth that brings Biodynamics, by way of embodying and exemplifying its philosophies, into its time. A time of Health.

Therefore the Association are calling for an especially visionary and committed team of bold, skilled and proactive Council members to carry this work thru over the next 3 years. There is a need for a sense of, to quote Steiner, Imagination (Innovation), Truth (Awareness) and Responsibility (Care), as core values of the team. Council are currently working on an exciting new approach and strategy, to get there.

Together the team is hoped to create change and regenerate an Association to one that is refreshed in feel, that reflects the desires of its members, delivers education and is appropriate to the next generation of growers. We encourage you to consider who would be good people to carry forward the vital work of Biodynamics Association in championing biodynamics in New Zealand and helping drive a new movement into this new era. Members of the Biodynamic Farming and Gardening Association can nominate a financial member for the governance body.

It has been identified by current Council, the Association at this time could especially benefit from experienced candidates in the fields or solid experience within effective Governance, Managing Directors, Finance/Treasurey, Communications, Sales, Strategic Planning and Biodynamic Education. Interested people will need to be/become Members of the Association.

“Be the change you wish to see in the world”.

The National Council consists of six elected members who are voted in for three-year terms, and/or co-opted members where needed.


For nominations to be accepted, please submit: 

  • A signed statement of nomination from two financial members of the Association, one nominator and one being Seconder.
  • A signed statement of acceptance from the nominee.

Those nominated or nominating should also submit:

  • A 250 word statement for publication by the nominee or nominator of as to the nominated’s background history, including any strategic experience with a national organisation and/or governance strength, the skillsets they can offer and a note of their aspirations for their term in office. *This statement shall not contain untrue or defamatory material and will be shortened if it exceeds 250 words.
  • A photograph of the nominee for publication if the candidate so wishes.

The closing date for submitting nominations to the Association Office is Friday, 8th May 2020.
Email your nominations to the or post to the Office PO Box 356 | Martinborough 5741 | New Zealand
If you are interested about being a Council member and would like to know more, please email or 027 231 0824

Current Council

Hannah Tatton – Chair – co-opted until AGM
Joao Corbett – Treasurer – co-opted until AGM
Allen Gorthy – elected until 2021

Call for Remits

A remit is an item referred for consideration and a proposed change to the Associations Standing Orders and Rules. Remits may be submitted to the AGM by groups or individuals who are a financial member of the Association, as well as the Association’s Council.  A financial member is one whose subscription is paid up-to-date or not more than three months in arrears.  All remits submitted by groups or individuals must be signed by at least 10 financial members of the Association. Further information on the process for submitting remits can be found in the Standing Orders.

The last day for submitting remits to the Association Office is Friday, 10th April 2020.

Rachel Pomeroy presents at International Biodynamic Conference, Switzerland

Photo: Rachel presenting in the Goetheanum. Slide features Hua Parakore / Te Waka Kai Ora indigenous verification principals. Photo Credit: Adriano Zago

The Annual International Conference of the Biodynamic movement was held last week from the 5th to 8th February 2020 at the Goetheanum, Dornach, Switzerland. Well known New Zealand biodynamic practitioner and teacher Rachel Pomeroy was asked to attend and gave three presentations.

Life Sketches are short lectures based on life, practice and projects. Rachel’s lecture discussed the following:

Universal Spirituality
Colonisation of India and New Zealand, in each case, virtually destroyed a complete, intact indigenous knowledge system.  A knowledge system which determined their practical life, from cultivating food, collecting healing plants, to navigating the mighty Pacific Ocean.  Rachel’s experience of biodynamic practice in both countries has helped her to see a universal world spirituality, existing in differing contexts of location, culture and religion. 

During the 3 day workshop, which was designed to deepen understanding and share experiences, Rachel joined with Marcela Vega Toy and Sundeep Kamath and presented the following:

Different spiritualities and biodynamic agriculture / Espiritualidades diferentes y agricultura biodinámica
Marcela Vega Toy & Sundeep Kamath & Rachel Pomeroy (English/Español) (s)
The Maori creation mythology, the sadness of the separation of heaven and earth, and our possibility, through practice of biodynamics, to turn sorrow to joy. The temple of the heavens reflected in the Wharenui, the meeting house, and, further, in the temple of our own body. In the context of these histories, experience “As above, so below”, macrocosm and microcosm and the role of the BD preps in facilitating the ordering forces of the Cosmos to order the life in our farm and garden. Maori astronomy and star-lore will help us understand and remember the ascending and descending periods of the moon and which farming activities to do in each period.  The summer and winter homes of the Sun help us know the seasons of the year, and the ascending and descending moon, and how they are used in timing agricultural practices. The Maori moon calendar, based on moon phases and tides and what can we learn from it. Jessica Hutchings’ characterisation of the six principles of traditional Maori food growing/collecting, and how she incorporated biodynamics into her own garden management. From India, the Navagraha, the nine planets, their plants, their arrangement in the temple in relation to the setting and rising horizons, dying and becoming. Shiva bringing the world into creation helps elucidate the role of planetary processes and BD preps in unfolding life. The circle of 27 Nakshstra star groups, or 12 Rasi (Zodiac constellations), as natural divisions of the 360 degree circuit of sun, moon and planets through the stars.  Sacred grove plantings of the 27 Nakshatra trees. The sacred cow, traditional fertility building recipes and practice, and how biodynamics is incorporated in practice.

A time each day was set aside for an Open Space section during which Rachel lead the following discussion:

The Biodynamic Preparations; their function in relation to Planetary Processes
The Biodynamic Preparations; their function in relation to Planetary Processes.  This is the question she lives with as a star watcher and prep maker.  Rachel shared her experiences and invited conversation with others.

Rachel Pomeroy will be presenting on similar topics at the 2020, 96th Annual Biodynamic New Zealand Conference, to be held in Akaroa, Otauhtahi, Christchurch this June.

Stay tuned for more information, speaker line up and registrations over the coming month.

2018 Biodynamic Conference – Water & Light

The theme for the 2018 Biodynamic Conference is Water and Light.  And what a wonderful place to appreciate both – Central Otago.

The 2018 Biodynamic Conference will take place from Friday, 22nd to Sunday, 24th June 2018.  The first day will be spent at The Orchard Garden in Clyde and moving to Rippon Vineyard for the Saturday and Sunday workshops.

Keynote addresses will be given by Thea Maria Carlson, the newly appointed Executive Director of the American Biodynamic Association (BDA), who will share highlights of the BDA’s recent work in promoting the biodynamic movement in North America.

The second keynote speaker is Ian Trousdell, director of The Foundation for Water.  Ian will talk on the rhythmical dynamic flow and energy of water.

There will be workshops on Maori Star Lore and the Dark Skies, which is appropriate as this is around the time of year that the festival of Matariki is celebrated.  Other talks will cover tree pruning and working with the biodynamic tree paste, along with further talks on water and light.

Mark your calendar now for an inspiring weekend.  Even better, book your flights and accommodation!  The Queenstown Winter Festival is on at the same time so it will be a busy place to get to.  More details and updates will be added here or on our Facebook page in the coming weeks.

(Photo: Rippon)

Fresh summer vegetables in a box on a bright tablecloth.

Nourish to Flourish: Counting Down to Launch!

Our pilot biodynamic education programme Nourish to Flourish launches in less than a month and hopes are high for a stellar success.

Read more