Biodynamic agriculture and viticulture (grape growing) takes organic farming to another level.
Biodynamic producers follow the principles developed from a series of lectures given by Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925) in 1924.
The basic principle or belief is that the soil is alive and that there is a cosmic relationship between the ebb and flow of the sun, moon and the earth.
Followers of the biodynamic principles integrate local soil and environment conditions with animals, plants and vines. They use cover crops to enhance fertilisation, plant fruit trees and Echinacea to attract predator to control the pest population. Chickens and sheep are used to loosen the soil.
Compost is made from yarrow, chamomile, nettle, oak bark, dandelion and valerian. The soil and vines are treated with homeopathic sprays and herbal preparations to protect from pests and disease. Activities in the vineyard such as planting, spraying, and picking are prescribed by the cycles of the moon, the rhythm of the earth and astrology. Most of the work: pruning, trellising, thinning, clipping and picking are done by hand. The use of agricultural machinery is kept to a minimum to avoid compression of the soil. Biodynamic vineyards are expected to be as self sufficient as possible.
Each vineyard is seen as its own unique individual ecosystem. Biodynamic wines taste and colour reflect this dedication to quality all the way through the wine making process.