DO YOU LOVE AMAZING PRODUCE?
A Note For Organic Farmers:
The Essential BioDynamics course provides the vital details & unique potency for Bio-Organic Farming & Gardening-
so, The Essential BioDynamics is recommended BEFORE the farming course.
THIS is a full on-site, hands-on intensive- which comes with a lifetime experienced farming coach to answer all your questions!.... showing how YOU can take control of your own environment and food supply, simply by growing the highest quality food- best flavour, highest nutritional content, shortest time, minimal blights & infestations...using sensible, ancient wisdoms & the materials you have around you.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING:
~testimonials from Course engagers~
“Well I have finally finished the course, it has kept me coming back for more and more. I look at piles of leaves and wonder why they havent been collected by a composter, I look at the vast array of tools I have in my garden shed and compare them to im's 2 tools, I think of all the money I have spent on compost, the wasted effort and time spent on my garden to be dissapointed by the results. I am a new man from now on I am going to KEEP THINGS SIMPLE. I am going to compost everything thats suitable and waste nothing. I have thoroughly enjoyed this course and consider it a life changer. Well done im for teaching us SIMPLE is best.”- Vic A.
“A great insight to Bio dynamic/organic planting and the instructor's passion to a healthy future can be realized through his efforts in teaching and showing the practical methods. I have learnt a lot through this course and can't wait to try BD methods in my backyard gardening. I would really encourage everyone to try this course who is interested in learning how easy is to have a chemical free garden by just availing what nature has provided us…Thank you Im for all your efforts in spreading your wealth of knowledge and mother earth is proud to have your presence.. :) Good luck in all your future endeavors!!”- Sendhivel A
“Practical and informative, this is really an exciting course. Being made aware of these biodynamic practices and putting them to immediate use, is worth more than pure gold. I am humbled by having received such ancient knowledge at this stage in my life. With gratitude…”- Nancy D.
This is about sensible, easy, natural farming. and why should growing food ever be different?
This course is for creative~activist people, who are wired for Personal Power- to run their own show, their own simpl life, with good sense front & center.
This is Ladakhi Organic Farming utilizing BioDynamics (BD), or the cosmic dance which infuses, flows throughout Life on our mother planet. What does that mean.......you simply-
Know how the BD rythmns and calendar guide us into the highest-probability, best-results days for doing everything related to our beautiful farm- or tomatoes in the windowbox- throughout every season.
Everything you need for SimPLy growing your own food- detailed on-site videos, storydocs & infotools, coming to you LIVE from high-desert (himalayan Ladakh), tropical (Thailand) and temperate climes (Korea): planning & creating, planting, nutrifying, watering & cultivation- and of course, the Glorious Harvest.
Not for info-tourists, you will be fairly tested for assured farming results...Career farmers, backyard hobbyists, avid foodies or community leaders, urban or rural, will find this creatively fun & essential!
~ WHAT YOU WILL NEED TO COMPLETE THE COURSE ~
EXPERIENCE not required! Only a willingness for Personal Adventure
The Core Concept here is Self-Reliance: not dependent… STRIVE for Flight by your own Wings and we'll help you get there!
All pertinent Info & Links will be supplied, to support your Efforts & Research. Questions? USE your Instructor to FILL IN what is missing!
FarmField needs: A piece of Land is ideal, otherwise multiple Containers work just fine...
Soil Builder needs: Organic Materials such as local manures, dried grasses or grains; vegetable Scraps from kitchen, restaurant or yard
Water needs: Natural water supply (river, stream, canal) or water mains (piped-in supply, hose etc)
The Bio-Farmer's BEST TOOL List:
a BioDynamics Calendar (free online, links provided)
A Sturdy Farming Hoe, a hand Digger or Trowel, a Bucket or two
Experienced Clothing: Gloves, Sunhat, long-sleeved cotton Shirt, tough bare Feet, old Shoes
BUDDIES to help you have FUN - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - (group projects are always BEST)
....and a SMILE
At any time, if something does not make sense to you, or you have a
particular situation to ask about- USE this course as an info-forum! ASK ANY
and EVERY QUESTION in course discussions, so others may benefit,
in addition to yourself.
In this indirect way, you are thus also helping to teach, or direct, the course.
have fun with this!
WELCOME TO BIO-ORGANIC FARMING!
PLEASE STAY TUNED FOR REGULAR UPDATES, as more videos and resources are plowed into the earth of this ancient body of knowledge. AND PLEASE GO THROUGH THE ENTIRE CONTENT BEFORE YOU FARM, IF THIS IS A NEW EXPERIENCE FOR YOU.
are hereby applauded and lauded, as a sincere seeker of furtherance to
your own life's quality, and your life's enjoyment! Make no mistake,
YOU are a rarity (you ARE sincere in this, right...) in this human world-
in a time when the vast majority of the planet's humans are running AWAY from farming, indeed from any form of hu-manual work,
many more farmers are desparately needed to feed those who will not or can not grow the planet's holistically-produced, organic food...
The majority of this course is set in the magnificent splendour of himalayan Ladakh- however, this is coming to you from 25+ years of Environmental Engineering & Organic Farming experience, and details, tips and tricks gathered from around the planet. This farming story thus becomes something of a travellogue, in the telling.
THIS COURSE IS A PERENNIAL WORK-IN-PROGRESS
We therefore humbly beseech you to suggest any farming details or areas we may have overlooked by contacting us, and you will be either directly answered or this course will be augmented, in the earliest means possible....
PLEASE be aware that Ladakh and many of the SimPL farmsites do NOT have regular INTERNET! Your good patience, therefore, is implored, for replies and updates.
We look forward to seeing you on the dashboard, and in discussion.
Let's work on this primal key to human life-excellence &
this vital link to living well and SimPLy, together!
Enjoy in the very best of Spirit and Health
whatever does ORGANIC mean, anyway?
this is one abused & overused word in the English language nowadays.
and mostly it gets,well, lost in translation.
poor 'organic' our friend, is at once a buzzword, a branch of chemistry, delineator of certain behaviours, and the flagship of a global cultural movement.
and i wonder how many folks really have the right word,
when they use this tired & over-wrought label.
then again, in this human world how much that is going on is going on correctly?
Got trench dug, got players got soil got water.
Throw it all together in 2 minutes- no more- and we got
composting, the way it oughta be. SimPL.
Almost as many ways to get bacteria together, as there are to skin a cat.
here a few common composting arrangements. do it fast do it right, but...
to do it.
Soil treats must be processed PRIOR to the farm rising up in existence, as the good stuff must go into the soil before the seeds.
HONOUR and NURTURE thy workstaff (the subsoil gang), and thou shalt be thrival......
Therefore, soil treats, compost & BD preps become the first key area of physical activity in the BioFarmer's repertoire.
This reference doc is a SimPL spin-through of what soil preps we are likely to be seeing in this course, and why some are used & others not, in the SimPLife toolbox. Descriptions, guidelines & recipes.
keepin it all quik & simpl, folks. enjoy that.
let's try a few questions, to see if you're getting the ideas right......
strange or not, i am such a composting maniac, that i will do it in every place i am, whenever i get half the chance.
healthy, fully fed and structured soil to me is your real calling card as a farmer. (ok, 'gardener' if you are uncomfortable with the grandiose myth, that the term 'farm' has.)
good soil is good food, there is no avoiding it, almost no matter how badly you botch up the growth process.....
Filmed in BaanKai, on the island of Koh Pha-Ngan, Thailand, early 2015. This island is where tropical application to the Ladakhi Method was carried out, from 2013 to 2015.
In this lecture, we review the basics of any farmwork - what you might wear,
and tools very recommended for you to use.
This is an example how-to, so just sit back and take it in, prior to doing your own plannage...
...from using the hoe, to clearing the field, to creating those first cells and canal in your Ladakhi-style farm.
it's a lot of fun to just creatively combine seeds, and change ideas and conditions from cell to cell, just to see what'll happen. so why not
MAKE A RECORD OF EVERYTHING
remember every little detail, to avoid or ensure same next season?
here's a simpl quik suggestion to diagram & record this year's
spectacular events out there.
All about the Ladakhi clay soil & its properties, and how to lay down & maintain that planting surface within the cell.
How does the Ladakhi Method handle large-volume production?
Here, a few examples of afterseason Ladakhi grainfields, shown empty in order to see the complete field layout.
Shown here, prime canals (main supply), the feeder canals which channel water through large sections of the field, and the artery canals & berms which supply each of the long cells which contain the grainplants or produce.In LM, when canals are used, each cell
entrance is gated with a rock, and usually a bit of old cloth- or even
rubber- underneath, to prevent water from seeping into cells whilst the
gates are closed. (see the attached photo)
Here, a huge jug of icky urine is actually sloshed upon the cells, during the soil treatment process.
DO try to maintain a scientific curiosity.
Also, we get into using the SimPLife HOT planting mix, and what that is about.
A discussion on what will be planted, and why.
Also, some vital info on the seeds themselves, and why seeds are one primary focus of SimPLife.
OK, time for a quiz on applying what you have learned about BioDynamics.
Real life, hard-hitting facts are thrown down, and your executive decision sets the whole farm process going the way YOU decide.You are requested here to pause and consider well, prior to moving onto the next lecture...
Responses to BD questions asked in the previous lecture.
The official SimPLife opinions are given, based on experience and highest probabilities.
However, NO wrong answer really exists- there is only your decision, setting action towards result.
Describes seed factors: of planting depth, early and full-growth plant spacings, and companion planting guidelines.
NOTE: a companion planting chart is recommended, to choose the right combinations of crops and herbs in your field. many useful charts exist online- using the largest chart available- one with the maximum number of crops listed is recommended, to allow a SimPLer and wider selection.
RESOURCE ATTACHED: as discussed in the video, please review the
Women's Alliance of Ladakh
Seed Bank Planting Guide
, done as a volunteer SimPL project in 2013,
to complement a most valuable seed bank effort-
a room of Ladakhi superseeds is nothing to ignore-
in collaboration with the Navdanya organization of India, which is nothing to ignore.
the chart admittedly is a bit involved- you may want to take time to understand how it reads- but it includes planting depths for various types of crops, a little local lore, and plant spacings & watering info is there as well.
incidentally, i had the great fortune to meet the great Navdanya leader Dr. Vandana Shiva at the Ladakhi Organic Festival there at the WAL facility, and passed onto her my information for the Ladakhi Organic Farming book (still in progress), but unfortunately did not hear back from them. this happens as well- we do not always meet with great success or have great results when dealing with great people.
something as trivial and common as failure should never dissuade us, in my opinion, from the work we feel we must do, or efforts that have great importance for ourselves and this planet.
More discussion on getting nutrients and seeds into the soil.
Planting Demo: organic Ladakhi brassica superseeds are planted whilst straddling a cell.
A basic description of the physical aim of this course.
Consider please, Bio-Farmer, this concept, this discussion as ongoing. YOU are ever invited to attempt verbal capture of this definition at anytime (start a discussion!)- we welcome this of course.
At this time, SimPL sense suggests that it is the DOING of a farm
which plies the intrigue, thus feels the experienced Truth of farming.
We may all approach this sensing of farm-knowledge as we continue, as we dig deeper into the substrate of our farmplay-
and perhaps YOU have had it all along, and merely await the rest of us to catch up.on with the show.
Amalay the mother, head of the local family, helps us to understand the regular Ladakhi watering practice. Also, when to water via canals vs. hosefeed watering, is discussed and exampled.
Where were we? Farming. right. This is a quick sweep of the planted cells, 5 weeks into the future, and how it compares to
the neighbouring Ladakhi cells.
This shows the SimPL process of how overplanting can turn one cell into many,
as we find more time to expand the farm.
Mulching: The essence of Multiplicity, merely by covering the soil around valuable plants with straw or dead cellulose. see how....
Green Manures: freshly cut green plants, laid in among the crops, under the mulch. An extra jolt of vital nutrient at mid-to-late season.
A discussion on thinning, and how this process is at the center of various cell maintenance activities.
The first farm HARVESTING also occurs here- the small or baby plants singled out for the season's early salad.
Speed thinning - or using a tool to quickly chop through close planting, is discussed and exampled.
Also, more discussion of the thinning process - how multiplicity, if properly utilized, can result in performance of all cell maintenance activities - cultivation, weeding, small-produce harvesting, plant spacings & selection.
Suggests a balance, on how much influence BD has on our actions.
When do we harvest vegetables, vs. root crops, for storage?
Do we rely on BD to tell us when we can pick crops to eat right now?
Factors- Also, the importance of farming with a special someone-
special due to that rare appreciation of quality-grown food- who can
assist in farm management when we are called away...
HARVEST - that most glorious time of ultimate farm success and plenitude - occurs at the time of optimum moisture upon the Earth.
For most all vegetables, seedplants, herbs and fruits, this is at Ascending Moon period, during an AIR zodiac constellation.
For root vegetables, this is on Descending Moon, during an EARTH constellation.
Here, Harvest time in the second guesthouse field. Here, we see mature cauliflowers being trimmed and bagged for storage & immediate use- and the green cuttings being carried directly to the cows.The idea here is, NEVER waste food! All of the plant which CAN be used, MUST be!
...those happy days of simpl harvest, taking daily abundance from the fields, SHARING all around, and treating yourself and others to the best gifts one can give...
Apples & Apricots are featured here in Ladakh, but fruits are adored worldwide, and are perhaps the best examples of PERENNIAL farming-
which, once established, generally produces high-value crops at much less effort than most vegetables.
One technique to put a bio-farmer on the map, is to UP-MARKET crops.
Produce crops in a form which involves preparation or process, and the
harvester thus kicks them into a higher energy category, with higher
dividends as a reward.
In this example, apples and apricots are shown simply sliced, and drying in the sun. Later these DRIED FRUITS provide year-round nutrition and yummy snacks, enjoyed as a family staple in Ladakh.Here, we see how they are street- sold in Leh
as in every Ladakhi market, along with other up-markets of various
prepared & scrumptuous nuts and fruits.
Ladakh, as in most mountain kingdoms, is known for its prolific production of organic grainstuffs, such as barley (nas), buckwheat, and most recently wheat (troe).
All rural Ladakhi habitations are surrounded by grainfields, whereas slow-trundling armies of farmer-buffaloes shouldering grain bundles are a common sight, from september through october.
Recently, my Ladakhi friend Sonam Shara gifted me with a rare gem- footage of modern-day local farmers using the ancient method of leading beasts (dzo) over grainstalks, in order to separate seed from chaff. this has been inserted to this lecture.
In rural Ladakh, a common sight is to see browned grasses adorning the roofs of most buildings. Wild, robust alfalfa & grainstalks are piled up to stay dry and protected, as feed for the various family friends: cows, goats, sheep, the occasional rats and mice.
This natural occurrence of super-beneficial alfalfa is a major blessing upon Ladakh, and a major player in the wide comfort margin they enjoy in rural life. In farming, this boon takes a bittersweet downturn, however.Due to high desert
super-dryness, the lack of outside wild pastures negates the mulching or
crop cover for wintering farmfields- thus the clay soil remains
predominantly clay, and soil-building technique alas is sorely missing
from the Ladakhi farming regimen...
Shows our little farming strip at season's end, which despite less than perfect human conditions, has supplied quite a lot of food this season all told, actually a success story.
Also, a rundown on the simpl, overall easy-going Ladakhi Method, how it isn't really much work over a whole season....
This series was filmed in Itaewon-dong, Seoul, Korea, in early summer 2015.
Although this example is not what most city dwellers are experiencing - to have a small plot of land outside your elevated apartment is decidedly NOT normal - it is nevertheless subject to the constraints that all urbanites are subject to, mostly space and privacy issues.Here, we see the small farmscape, and surrounding infrastructure of the noisy neighborhood.
Whither it be a soiled plot, a tub, box, or bucket, we start with the farm essentials, and mix it together to create our smallish urban farm layout.
Another scintillating BD quiz: this time for the particular conditions of the urban farmette. A few questions or conditions are posed here, for your consideration, regarding the BD calendar, local environment, and personal conditions.
A worst-case look at urban results, more or less:
This is the result of the farmette existing on its own - with smatterings of watering in between local rains- and being subject to local abuses, as is bound to occur on occasion there.
Rajma beans are left in the farmette, to further ripen on the vine, for seed-harvest later on.
After the long offseason sleep, a field or urban growing project is
brought back to life. soil treats, slowly converting to useable nutrient
over the long months, mud & fireplace ashes dumped on, then mixed in.
the same rejuvenation can occur if you have an army of pots you wish to populate
with veg & flowers. pile all your treats and soil together on the ground somewhere
and mix, then go ahead and fill each pot or container.
next up, what to do after we make ready......
WHY do we plant seeds? to eat.
why must we choose what to plant? some things grow better than others in our areas,
some things we prefer over others, in our diet.
why is it so much better to choose the highest quality seed? in the life physical, we tend to be products of our environments, and that includes nutrient uptake. the best foods tend to bring the best results to your body. crap food brings, well.....
Caroline Myss has said "our biologies are our biographies". what sort of story are you writing for your body?
the seeds planted in this course are among the oldest continuous, open-pollinated examples of unbroken DNA on the planet. why do we care?
consider that DNA in reality is like a biophoton storage cache inside each bodycell, shooting light at cell functions 100,000 times per second, to keep the bodycell on track according to
what the proteins tell it to do*. you want that process- any of it- to falter, even once?
i think most of us would say no.
long story short, feed your body with the oldest, most intelliegent, best grown DNA & nutrient content, and you are firing more light in each cell, times trillions of cells, every moment of your life. sound good?
yeah. i'll take the heirloom produce, please...
* re: the work of Dr. Bruce Lipton. he explains it all much better than i.
one take, in an urban setting, of how our precious-most seeds go into our Earth.
this, according to the ladakhi method of cell farming, as opposed to the outmoded
row farming which stripped our planet of all her hard-won topsoil.
geez. row farming.
A summing-up of what we just did out there. how the BD factors in,
what companions were chucked in to each cell together-
and YOU are asked to check my decisions, please....
and what have we learned? actually its too big to capture entirely in this storyboard.
i HOPE you take notes.
what's NEW in this chapter, is how little work it takes to prep every new season,
once we have established our ladakhi method in a previous year.
the soil, if you notice, has become a complex, dark, rich and nutrified
playground of subsoil ecstasy. well, maybe it isn't quite as poetic for you,
but these little gems of knowledge and skill we make
can some day be what keeps us alive.
keep in mind, the principles and procedure used here, is no different, really,
than what goes on in the big fields of the rural clean-air breathers.
and, this works both ways- we don't need to be disadvantaged in the city,
if we have just a spot of soil somewhere, or containers with a view of sun.
Engineer, instructor, builder/designer/filmmaker/healer/actor/musician/farmer and world-wandering wordweaver, im has been sojourning, building, planting, writing and teaching for over 30 years.
In 1991, prior to the dawn of certification, im created SimPL as a short-contract and volunteer organization which seeks out and assists individuals and communities towards arriving at a self-reliant lifebase, amidst the growing apathy and consumption-fetish now gripping the general human population.
SimPLife is the practice of natural living, with the intention of supporting and preserving the purity & sanctity of sensible lifestyle: project builds and life-skills courses (permaculture & biodynamics-based), organic farming, natural building & life masterplanning.
To date, there have been SimPLife builds or courses in Ladakh, Turkey, Spain, USA, Thailand, Ecuador, Korea, Phillipines, Guyana and England.
im's professional certifications include:
BS Electrical Engineering
BS Civil Engineering
LEED Accredited Professional
Solar PV Designer/Installer, SEI
Reconnection Healing Practitioner/ Reiki Master
Wilderness Emergency Medical Technician, SOLO
Wilderness Guide Educator, NOLS