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Biodynamic Gardening in Tuakau: Introductory talk with Peter & Gill Bacchus

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Event description

Growing a community of biodynamic gardeners in and around Tuakau, with Katrina Wolff from Blue Borage and guests. 

A big welcome to Gill and Peter Bacchus, guest speakers from Thames, each of whom bring a depth of knowledge and experience that is hard to find in this area. This first visit is an introductory talk + shared lunch afterwards. 

Gill and Peter are interested to hear what people are most interested in learning, so that future workshops can be hands on practical skills so you can go home and improve the quality of your soil and food immediately.

We've planned two talks: 10am-12pm at the Sharda Centre (next to the biodynamic food forest), followed by a shared lunch. This is probably going to appeal to home gardeners and lifestyle block owners who are interested in getting straight to the heart of the matter, although commercial growers and newcomers are both welcome. 

from 2pm-4pm we will adjourn to the Tuakau Museum and host a similar talk, but we'll be surrounded by rustic farm equipment, next to the Railway Pollinator Garden. This venue feels more appropriate for the commercial grower, farmer or business owner curious to implement biodynamics on their premises. Home gardeners are welcome, and with this being an introductory talk, there will be newcomers at each event. You are welcome to come to both. 

Here are the topics Gill and Peter can include:  

Grow strong, nutrient dense plants, resilient to climate extremes, pests & disease

Biodynamics is an organic system that enables you to build your property’s unique potential

Better production - Biodynamics gives you extra tools in an organic system to

  • improve and balance soil fertility
  • increase resilience and adaptability to climate change
  • increase resistance to pests, disease and weeds

Better nutrition -Through balancing and enhancing the energies from the soil and from the sun, moon, planets and wider cosmos, plants are strengthened, more alive and nutrient dense. Well grown plants in a biodynamic system generally give you better taste, more nutrients, better mood, thinking and consciousness.

The biodynamic planting calendar enables you to work with moon rhythms and also the influences of the planets and zodiacal constellations when sowing and cultivating plants.
Generally these are only small effects and more important to work with seasonal and weather conditions.

The biodynamic preparations, made from plant and animal parts, enliven your soil, microorganisms and plants to balance and enhance growth, production and food quality.

These are a key part of biodynamics that many people find too way out or too hard. We can teach you rational reasons for, and effects of using each one and various options for applying them. 

These practices are used as well as organic practises such as composting, crop rotation, companion planting, and permaculture design. 

Good observation and being in tune with the seasons, your particular property conditions, your plants and animals are also key.

A little more about Gill & Peter: 

Gill Bacchus enjoys sharing her experiences of growing herbs and vegetables
organically at workshops, schools and kindergartens. She has a M.Sc. in Soil Science
and Human Nutrition, studying the effects of composts and biodynamic preparations
on the food value of lettuces. She worked as a regional coordinator of the OANZ
Farm Advisory Programme.
Her particular interest is in Steiner’s teaching on how energies from the stars and
planets, enhanced by biodynamics, improve the physical, soul and spiritual nutrition
from our food. She has written 2 books on this topic, ‘Food full of life’ and ‘Love your

Gill Bacchu
Gill Bacchus

Peter Bacchus grew up on a dairy farm and has long experience of organic and biodynamic
farming and growing. He also ran a large-scale compost-making business, and has grown
greenhouse tomatoes and medicinal herbs. Peter regularly makes biodynamic preparations,
helped with making homeopathic sprays from the preparations and does long-term
weather forecasting from studying planet movements. He has studied soil science and
advocates getting carbon back in the soil as the best way to mitigate climate change. Peter has
worked as a consultant to a wide variety of farmers, orchardists and gardeners.
Peter has run many workshops and field days, demonstrating how to make and use
biodynamic preparations. He enjoys sharing his knowledge about biological and biodynamic
methods, building fertile soils, and troubleshooting weed, disease and pest issues.

Peter Bacchus
Peter Bacchus

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