The following will give growers a two part series which allows readers to get an understanding, a grip and a hands-on entry to a new method which they can apply to their own practice, whether garden, orchard or vineyard.
This first issue provides an introduction to Plant Homeopathy and a ‘get your head around’ background theory to awaken some interest, also this first part gives some practical details for the winter and pruning season.
The second issue will cover topics such as preparing the busy spring time soil, and plant needs and wants for good first growth of shoots and roots. Additionally it will be dealing with seed beds, transplanting and stress relief. Also it will go into details of disease prevention and how to treat acute and chronic soil and plant conditions and problems.
As the author of this series, I Andreas Welte, own and manage a family farm/orchard called Castle Rock Ranch at Marahau near Motueka. About half of the 300 acres of land is farmed, the rest is pristine bush and regenerating bush.
The orchard grows apple, pear, apricot, olive, cherry and table grape, close to the house is a vegetable garden. Farmwise there are eight fenced paddocks running a herd of nursing cows of around 40 heads to produce beef for the market. All the land has been managed organically/bio-dynamically since 1990. All animals have been treated homoeopathically since then, all crops have been treated with plant homeopathy for fifteen years.
Back in Germany I studied agricultural sciences completing a degree in 1981. Before entering university I undertook an agricultural/horticultural apprenticeship on biodynamic, organic and conventional farms in Switzerland, Canada and Germany. During this time and thanks to my brother who is a medical doctor specialising in classical homeopathy, I developed the interest in homeopathy.
A tertiary degree in Germany is obtained by finishing all university exams and then dedicating half a year to write a thesis on a subject close to heart and mind. My preferred choice was to write on ‘Homeopathic treatment of crops’ because my practical experience and studies had convinced me of the potential and effects of minute quantities of material, biological inputs and their tremendous energies while experiencing the application of ‘dynamised preparations’ on the Suisse bio-dynamic farm orchard. My professor in plant science did not agree with this idea and said: “there is no such thing as homeopathy for plants, go and ask the veterinary department to write something on homeopathy for animals.
Some fifteen years later after coming to New Zealand I could set into practice, what I had intended to do. I permitted myself to treat all crops and animals with homeopathy. But could I just use the knowledge and experience I had gained on animals on plants as well? A five year long learning curve gave me parts of the answer: you’ll be learning for the rest of your life. During those five years several homeopathic remedies have been trialled on the pip fruit, stone fruit and grape to treat curly leaf, mildew (downy and powdery), brown rot and blackspot (Venturia inaequalis).
Various homeopathic remedies like equisetum, silicea, sulphur, cuprum met., potentised clay, cow dung and nosodes (potentised diseased parts of fruit and leaf) have been used, not exactly knowing which potency and how much of it had to applied to get best results.
Basic principles of Homeopathy
Law of Similars
Homeopathy is medical edifice of thoughts and ideas of Dr.Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843). Its main guiding principle is the law of similars which is called “simila similibus curentur” or “like is cured by like” (1). For example plants grown in lime deficient soil show stunted growth and leaves of greyish colour. Treating a healthy plant with Silicea will produce exactly those symptoms. Applying potentised Silicea to a plant with the same symptoms will reinvigorate that plant and bring it back to good health. We are always treating the whole plant and the soil it grows in. Actually we are treating all the symptoms that can be observed, the cause for those symptoms, how these symptoms are manifested, where they are located, and what makes the symptoms better or worse. (2)
This principle relates to the method of testing substances on healthy plants and observing all the symptoms to determine the medicinal effects. Once we know the proving and combine it with the modalities which describe the conditions in which a symptom gets better or worse, we can chose the most adequate remedy.
Principle of Potentisation
This is about the correct preparation of the selected remedy. According to S. Hahnemann this dynamisation involves dilution and rhythmic succussion (hitting the jar with the diluted mix against a book case of a thick book or on a wooden block) of the original substance after dissolving it in alcohol or triturating it with lactose to form little round balls called globuli. This dynamic process transforms the matter of the remedy’s original substance into an energetic pattern bearing the infor-mation from the remedy in a non-material form. This energetic form matches the vital energy of the plant like the correct key fits the lock. The more it is diluted and dynamised, the stronger is its effect. The D potencies (D1-D23) are so-called low potencies which still contain some of the original substance’s matter and are best used as fertiliser. D means decimal dilution by 1:10 = D1, take one part of D1 and dilute it again by 1:10 leads to D2 and so forth.
The C potencies (C for centesimal) C30 and C200 are high potencies which no longer contain molecules of the original substance after their dynamisation (dilution, succussion). They are very powerful and unexperienced ley persons may cause more harm than cure if administering them in the wrong way. (3) Here one part of the mother tincture is diluted with one hundred parts of the neutral carrier to get the C1 potency, one part taken out of that diluted with another one hundred parts of the carrier leads to C2 and so forth.
Each remedy has a distinct description of its various qualities and characteristics to help the grower to find the correct one to treat the observed symptoms of a dis-ease with. A list and categorisation of most likely remedies is called Materia Medica. A Materia Medica is to include all substances which have been proved and which have been used with apparent efficacy. (4)
In homeopathy a certain tool was developed to link all the observed symptoms of a disorder with the potential choice of remedies listed in the Materia Medica. As many remedies were studied, there needed to be a way to organize the information. The flow of information was like this: provings to materia medica to repertory. (5)
In Christine Maute’s book, a plant repertory is included in form of a Table of Modalities which crosslinks a certain set of symptoms or disorders with the best possible homeopathic remedies to be applied.
One remedy only
Provings of homeopathic remedies are done by proving one substance at a time. If later used in a combination it is not clearly known how they might interact, counter act or neutralise each other. Classical homeopathy therefor uses only one remedy at a time.
Dosage and administration of C potencies
Home garden: Crush 6-8 globules in 150 ml water using a wooden spoon (not metal). Make sure all globules are diluted properly before application. Succuss the jar against a book case for about ten times to reinvigorate the energies held in the globules before mixing the 150 ml with 30 litres of water to obtain your spray volume. This is the volume for three back pack spray tanks.
Orchard/Vineyad size: Crush 60-80 globules in 1.5 litres of water. Succuss as above and add to your 300 litres spray tank. Make sure that your tank has been well cleaned before using it for homeopathic remedies. Use clean water only, not of any chlorinated source.
Apply as mist and cover the plants to run-off coverage, also apply to the ground as the soil gets treated at the same time as the plant it grows.
Dosage and administration of D potencies
D potencies are better used to build up and strengthen plants, as much as to fertilise the surrounding soil and to deter and fight unwanted insects. Use about ½ a teaspoon of D6 globules crushed and stirred in 10 litres of water in the home garden. Use ten times the amount for 100 litres in your orchard or vineyard spray tank. Again, make sure to cover the soil around the roots as much as the plant.
- Do not repeat the dose while the plants are getting better
- Only repeat the dose if the plants show slight signs of improvement and then the disorder returning in the same way as before (6)
- With homeopathic plant treatment right now we are right at the beginning. Therefor it is a good idea to share our experience as much as possible
- At firstname.lastname@example.org we are starting a shared web link where all interested growers can join this new path and build a network for common growth
What are good reasons to apply Homeopathy for Plants?
- Homeopathy works for humans, animals and plants
- Homeopathy supports the self-healing inner forces
- Homeopathic remedies are residue free, safe and work very gently
- No addiction, side effects or suppressed symptoms
- Homeopathy has the smallest ecological footprint and does not waste limited resources
- Homeopathy is very economical
- Homeopathy goes hand in hand with organic and biodynamic methods
Practical hints for the winter/pruning season
Apply Arnica C30 as recommended after all pruning cuts have been done. Apply it to cut wounds and soil in the root zone.
Arnica montana (ex Materia Medica)
– General effect
Consequences of blows, impact, being dropped;
Excellent tonic for all plants
Improves circulation in the plant’s capillary system
Arnica ensures that the plant is properly supplied right through to the shoots and tips
– Damage caused by errors in cultivation
Injuries from pruning
Injuries from transplanting or relocation
– Weather damage
We wish all growers a good winter season and best success with any new beginnings using the exciting method of Homeopathy for their plants.
Andreas Welte, May 2015
(1) The Spirit of Homeopathy, Rajan Sankaran, Homeopathic Medical Publishers, Mumbai, India
(2) Homeopathy for Plants, Christiane Maute, Narayana Publishers, page 5, Kandern, Germany
(3) Homeopathy for Plants, Christiane Maute, Narayana Publishers, page 7, Kandern, Germany
(4) Homeopathic Materia Medica, Oscar E. Boericke, Narayana Publishers, page ix, Kandern, Germany
(5) New World Veterinary Repertory, Richard Pitcairn&Wendy Jensen, Narayana Publ., page vii, Kandern, Germany
(6) Homeopathy for Plants , C. Maute, page 12
(7) Homeopathy for Plants, C. Maute, page 112
Go to part two – Homeopathy for Plants Part 2
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