Last week I wrote a bit about how Biodynamics affects the plants. This week I want to talk about the importance of animals on a Biodynamic farm. We strive to minimize off farm inputs, to do this we must create our own fertility. We have cows, pigs and chickens to achieve this goal.
When I was apprenticing, I worked on a farm where the owners were vegan. Because of this choice they did not want animals on the farm. But all they did was plant and extract. There was no giving back to the soil. Their yields went down.They decided to get seabird guano from Argentina to try to rebuild the nutrients in the soil. All I could think of was people on rocks harvesting bird poop to be sent to America. Then I discovered Biodynamics!
Our critters are all integrated into our farm plan. Other then providing meat, milk and eggs our animals give the farm so much more.
The cows spend much of their time on pasture. They fertilize the pastures as they graze. Eventually the pastures will be turned into garden. The grass and manure build up the soil for years before we move the garden through again.
As the cows are grazing, we move the chicken coop through the pastures. We fence them in and they eat bugs, grass and seeds. After the chickens have been in an area it looks decimated. All the grass is scratched and eaten to the soil level. There is chicken waste about. But after a couple of weeks of water and rest, it comes back and is the most lush and green spot on the farm. It is amazing. The chickens spend the winters in our greenhouse. Eating weed seeds, bugs and fertilizing the future tomatoes!
Our pigs are also on pasture. We put them in places when we are ready to turn the pasture into garden. They dig up the grass roots, eat lots of weeds and save Jed lots of tractor time, and of course, they are adding fertility to the soil all the time!
In the winter the cows choose to stay close to the buildings once the snow gets deep. Every spring we clean up the cow yard and sheds. All the bedding and manure is put into a big pile and this is the beginning of our compost pile.
The compost pile is another key element in Biodynamics and next week I'll let you know why our compost is extra special!
PRESS: OH MY! We made the Planet Jackson Hole three times this week!!! ...and it is all good news!
Writer Andrew Munz came to check out the workshare scene read more here: planetjh.com/2016/07/20/well-that-happened-kind-cultivation/
Jackson Foodie Annie Fenn talks Farmer's Market etiquette here: planetjh.com/2016/07/20/the-foodie-files-farmers-market-savoir-faire/
And possibly the best article I have ever read about the farm here: planetjh.com/2016/07/20/redneck-perspective-sustainable-crimes/
We are almost out of bags! Bring bags to the pick up!!!
Check the coolers at your site. I attached a list of prices and cuts to your email. If you know you want something, please email me and I will send it over for you. You can also tell your site hosts you have a request and I will send it the next week. We purchased 2 cows from Lifeline. They are packaged with our label because we brought them to the butcher live and for us to sell them they needed a label...and well, we are Cosmic Apple! It is really just the legalities of selling USDA inspected meat. More info then you need, but we want to be completely honest about what we have!
Find recipes for this weeks share here: www.cosmicapple.com/recipes.html
Bring Bags to pick-ups!
Wash Your veggies!
If you can't make it to pick up your veggies, send a friend!
Missed shares are forfeited for the week.
Members get 20% off at the Farmer's Markets!
The Driggs Market is Fridays 9-1.
The People's Market is Wednesdays 4-7.
Jackson Market is Saturdays 8-12.