From Ecology Action
Question: I was wondering why (as I understand it) Rudolf Steiner's liquid preparations like "500" aren't employed in the Biointensive method?
Answer: Thanks for the good question!
Ecology Action’s exploration of sustainable, high-yielding organic methods began with a combination of Alan Chadwick’s work with the French Biointensive method and Biodynamics, as introduced by Rudolf Steiner. Alan Chadwick occasionally used one or two of the Biodynamic preparations. We registered the method we evolved as GROW
BIOINTENSIVE® because it really wasn’t appropriate to call it Biodynamic, since we don’t use any of the Biodynamic preparations; and while it was closer to Chadwick’s French Biointensive method we had also further simplified that method to what is now detailed in How to Grow More Vegetables.
We find that the blended GB method we have developed yields at least equivalent results, if not better, without the need for all of the Biodynamic preparations. John does sometimes recommend 508 for minimizing water-borne diseases that can develop in greenhouse situations.
In the last chapter of The Secret Life of Plants the authors speak of Findhorn as being functionally Biodynamic, but not officially. Some people feel that Steiner meant for the preparations he developed to be useful specific to a point in time (1920s) and location (Europe) and that this should evolve relative to conditions, rather than being dogmatic. This allowed for other approaches to be “functionally” Biodynamic and to be the most effective for any given set of variables. However, not all people agree that this was his intent.
NOTE: Picture of Alan Chadwick adapted from http://www.metroactive.com/papers/cruz/10.02.97/chadwicks-garden-9740.html; picture of Rudolph Steiner adapted from http://images.rsarchive.org/images/Portraits/steiner-reitman-1915.jpg