Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Biodynamic Seed-propagation

On July 11th we where invited-to the open Seed- day at “Fintan” the 140 Ha Farm in Rheinau, the largest Biodynamic Farm in Switzerland.
Since over 25 Years farmers and researchers have been involved in developing seeds appropriate to Biodynamic and organic farming methods. Quite a number of vegetable seeds and cereals have by now been registered and made available since.
It takes thousands of seed trials and about 15 years until an acceptable variety of cereal is produced, an effort which can only be carried by subsidies and donations.
With the rapid disappearance of a large diversity of seed-stocks (and animal breeds as well) and the concentration of seed-propagation in the hands of a few powerful multinationals and lately the development of GMO seeds this work has become crucial for the future of humanity. Conventionally available seeds are not appropriate for sustainable farming methods, the only give results with high fertilizer inputs, herbicides and pesticides, and in general can not be propagated by the farmer, so that he has to buy new seed every year.
As a Banana grower I regret not to be able to work on seed propagation, the development of new Banana varieties is extremely difficult and costly, the Banana industry relies on the only one marketable Cavendish variety, which is propagated since over 30 years vegetabily and becomes increasingly susceptible to diseases. In Biodynamics we know that plants are cosmically rejuvenated by going through a flowering and seed-process.
We are glad to be able to contribute to this effort at least financially, apparently this seems to be typical for older people to be concerned about the future, it is the old farmer planting apple trees even if he does know that he will not be the beneficiary of the fruits, in that category also fits seed-propagation and the caring for the future of children. It could also be said that believing in re-incarnation this may not be all that altruistic as it seems!

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