Blue Eagle, I have a question about gardening. Many people nowadays are willing to have a proper garden, with fruit and vegetables grown with environment-friendly methods. But then, they encounter many problems, suchas parasitic insects, midges or worms devouring their salads, and they finally have to use pesticides, which causes their gardens to be no longer ecological. I think Anastasia, when she evokes the best way to tend ones’ garden, doesn’t mention those problems, thus the related solutions. I know you have your own garden and spend much time tending it. Do you sometimes have to tackle such problems, and what advice could you give to those people, who have reasons to feel discouraged?
BE:yes, I do encounter this problem. It’s important to understand that when insects harm the gardens it isbecause the earth has been brutalised. Most people, when they make a garden, will chop up the ground using tools, turning it over and destroying many insects and weeds in the process. The ground is the skin of the earth. Even if it is a minute injury, the earth still feels this. Imagine what this would do if you were to experience it yourself on your skin.
There is an alternate method of agriculture called permaculture. With this method you don’t rototill the earth, you cover it with mulch. Any raw organic plant stuffs can be used. Imostly use the autumn leaves that Igather in the fall. Sometimes Ieven use bark from the trees. Lots of people use mulch made with deciduous tree stuff. By covering the earth all that was growing there will become compost. The earth worms that are so important for airing the earth and keeping the ground soft will eat the composting weeds and make additional compost all the while making small holes that bring oxygen and promote growth.
If you overturn the earth, it hardens. If you cover it like a blanket, you promote life and the earth softens.
Weeds and insects are not the enemies of the garden. They offer important contributions to the holistic health of theland. You should never remove all the weeds. Always leave some so the unique contribution they offer will be received. No plants are there without reason. They all have a special role in the ecological balance of the land. Thesame is true with the insects. Never use chemicals to kill them, this will only amplify the problems your garden will experience ultimately, poisoning you as you eat the plants that came into contact with those chemicals. Ifyouhave problems with the insects eating your crops, then use other plants to control them. Youcan plant nasturtium, onions and garlic, and other plants that repel insects. There are many plants that can be used to control these insects. Concoctions with wild rustic tobacco are often used to spray those plants that are attacked by insects. Ihave never had to use these methods, so Ido not know them very well, but there is an abundant literature out there about them.
The point is that if you respect nature, she will collaborate with you on all levels. For instance, I have often made asmall little house for the toads Iwill meet in the garden. If they like the place, they will live there and eat anincredible amount of insects. Ihave noticed for example that people will come to my garden and suddenly they are assaulted by mosquitoes and black flies. Yet Inever see these bugs. When Imake holes to plant trees sometimes the black flies will rise up from the ground and fly around my head. Ieven invite them to bite me if they see pores that need cleaning on my skin. Yet they only very rarely bite me. The same is true with mosquitoes. If they come and plunge their needle into my skin, I recognize that they are doing their very special acupuncture on me. Iallow them to do their work. If you kill a mosquito when they have their needle in you, the dart under theskin remains and will cause irritation. If you let them do their job, you will experience benefits and with time you will nolonger require their help. Yet the biting insects hardly ever come to me since Ihave no need for their services. Ifyou eat what nature offers naturally in your garden, it will protect you since you will have no need for these specials therapeutics.
This may seem strange and uncomfortable to many people as many today have been conditioned with a fear and repugnancy towards insects. Be aware also that previously benign insects can become poisonous when nature is not respected. For example ticks. These in the past have not been dangerous to Man. But now that hunters have made a sport out of killing deer, the main food of ticks, they have become poisonous to Man and can inflict harmful diseases. Man also, in some cases, has developed dangerous allergies to insect bite. Some can even die from severe allergic reaction to insect bite. All this has happened because we are no longer living in harmony with Nature.
But now the time has come to re-enter into the sacred space of our motherland, to walk barefoot in peace upon theblessed skin of our divine Earth Mother. By cultivating your garden in a natural and friendly way, all of nature will rejoice and your health and happiness will increase a thousand fold. All in nature will become friendly and want to serve you with great joy. There is no activity more sacred than tending ones’ garden. When we all have our family domains that feed us with the best possible food, that food that has grown for us, then we will once more live in thepermanent bliss of the original paradise that earth really is.
Light and peace to all