Progress at Homefield Garden

The sessions at Homefield Garden begin by making a circle with the garden team members and reading the verse of the week from Steiner’s Calendar of the Soul.  It’s the time when we gather the strength and the drive before going to work on the land, and just one of the opportunities we have to feel deeply connected to one another as a team. We’re all volunteers and this allows us to carry out tasks with a lot of hard work and leaves space for passion to grow; 

“Because from the very beginning we have decided not to employ any staff or servants but to do all the work with our own hands.” (Karl König)

We had access to Homefield Garden in March, just in time to catch up with the season while we were propagating in our houses. Soon, we welcomed 30 pastured laying hens who sleep in a very special mobile house that we move on a daily basis.

In our vision, the 5 acres of land at Homefield garden are designed for growing vegetables, fruits and for egg production. Building the polytunnel, fencing, a little bit of tractor work, sowing, transplanting, weeding, mulching, harvesting, packing veg boxes, delivering them and looking after the chickens have been some of our main tasks over the past few months.

Our Land Group keeps studying and exploring innovative ways of farming, respecting nature’s systems and cycles. Our work could be seen as an old-fashioned way of doing agriculture. I prefer to look at it as natural farming, where we can combine tradition with new and innovative ideas. “From seed to table” is our goal, making the act of eating an agricultural act.

We set up a veg box scheme in accordance with the principles of “Community Supported Agriculture” (CSA), which is basically a partnership between farmers and consumers in which the responsibilities, risks and rewards of farming are shared. It is one of the most effective ways to bring back consciousness about food and to develop a connection with the earth.

We’re currently in the process of becoming Demeter certified (Biodynamic Certification). Biodynamic Agriculture remains one of the pillars of our Camphill Community and we already have the first apprentice who is starting the 2 year Biodynamic training at Homefield Garden from next month.

A lot has been accomplished in just a few months but much work needs to be done to pursue our goals and vision. This is just the beginning, but every start is also the end of a tough and painful process. Now we approach Michaelmas and the Harvest Festival inspired and excited. This year we are going to celebrate the crops, the harvest and the victory of higher ideals that a real Camphill Community has the duty to incarnate.

… In agriculture, by using the Biodynamic method we try to bring about the same kind of healing-in-balance and balance-in-healing with our relationship to the land…the fundamental principle is that in caring for the land, by maintaining the health of the soil, we can not only receive ever more richly the fruits of the earth, but can help to maintain and improve the environment itself.  Bateson

You can follow our progress in our community garden by joining our Facebook group here:

Marcello Giordano