|Carpenter Boggs, Lynne|
|Reganold, John - WASHINGTON STATE UNIV.|
Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: October 17, 1998
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Biodynamic agriculture has been studied as a system and in its components on working farms and small field plots. As a whole system, biodynamic farming was found to be an agriculturally and economically productive method of farming. As compared to conventional neighboring farms, biodynamic farms maintain similar economic returns and higher soil quality in terms of physical, biological, and chemical parameters. The application of compost as fertilizer and soil amendment contributes to the quality of soils in the biodynamic system. In short-term (2-yr) field plots, use of either biodynamic or non-biodynamic composted dairy manure enhanced biological parameters of soil quality, including soil microbial diversity. Yields of compost-fertilized wheat and lentils equaled yields of conventionally-fertilized crops. The biodynamic preparations themselves were not found to contribute significantly toward soil quality, crop yield or microbial diversity in short-term field trials.