Alan Chadwick a Gardener of Souls

Lecture by Alan Chadwick in New Market, Virginia, 1979


Lecture 6, Fertilization, Part 1

An Introduction to Alan Chadwick's Lectures and a Glossary of Terms

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Modern education considers that it already knows everything of importance. Man thinks that fertilization is optional and mechanical. Chemical agriculture is madness. Fertilization is a vast subject. Accurate perception is of the highest importance.Strengths and weaknesses in virgin soil. The relation of humanity to nature. Fertilization is a process that occurs over time. Animal manures and their relative values. Reasons to avoid commercial poultry manure and mushroom compost. Leaf molds and their relative values. Leaves of particular trees to avoid in compost. Calcium-giving fertilizations. The relative values of seaweeds, which generally must be washed of salt before use. (13:23)



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New Market, Virginia, September 11, 1979


Lecture 6, Fertilizations, Part 1



Please to place something very decidedly. One is inclined adamantly to take education of today as knowable. The whole world has been found. We all know exactly where we are. We know the whole of the planetary system. There is almost nothing that can be told to humanity. It’s just so clever. Science has explained everything, practically. They have only got a few new things to hatch out, which is a few more names added on really. And there can’t be any more Columbus or Columbae searching the world, because there is nothing to search for.

Well let’s leave that there. Do you understand what I am alluding to? Likewise, when one talks about the cultivation of the soil... We spoke yesterday, and one was inclined to think one was going to aim at:

“This year we’ll cultivate the soil.”

Is that so? Was that performance of the great glacier? Likewise, when one comes to fertilize, add your fertilization emphasis to the soil:

Do you anticipate that you will fertilize the garden this year?

What is the goal? What is the goal of fertilization? Is there one? Is not this the madness, is this not the absolute lunacy of the ministry of agriculture that they have five powders that they put together, throw it on, and say,


But the whole performance of Nature is metamorphosis. You understand that if you take calcium tablets for the bones, you are going the opposite direction. It is the metamorphosis that is the procedure. And that I point out to you most dominantly that we do not comprehend fertilization. It’s miles out of reach. It’s an incredible mountain. And we are gradually going to have it explained to us, "perceive it," as Plato would say, as we go along. I beg to remind you of Plato’s great statement every time we talk together. He said,

“I do not know, but I do perceive.”

I believe he was a very great person. Therefore, really what I am saying to you terribly childishly—and you must forgive this, but it’s the only way in which I can see to approach—that to take virgin soil... You have got contents in that virgin soil which are very advantageous. But you also have got a lacking in a whole procedure that you are going to introduce, that is your—forgive my using the expression—divine right of destiny in the garden. For that is one of the participants in our living and breathing, that we eat and put back manure and put back energy by eating. We do the metamorphosis of what we call food.

“Have you been fed?”

What do you mean, “Have you been fed?”

Have you put something inside you that has metamorphosed and sparks are coming out your fingers?

That is what having breakfast, lunch, tea, and dinner is. And likewise, therefore, you must comprehend that the manufacture... Oh, that’s not a factory: "manu, manus," the hand, and "facio" to make: to make by hand. They've applied it very wrongly into factories. It takes cycles, and not only cycles but ad infinitum, because it is very definitely a marriage of man with the angels, with the archangels.

So, if I may leave it there, you will understand precisely what I am saying, that we are not going to fertilize overnight. And that if we think we know what we are going to do and what we are doing, we only comprehend participants [parts]. They may be very tiny. Let us look at the practical side of both matters that we call fertilizations, which are given to us by the performance of the cycles and that have been completely turned into synthetics by today’s calumnious, shall we say misprocedures. Those we won’t bother to look at. We will look at those matters which are the huge propensities of everything given to us to produce, everything that is possible that the whole spiritual image of the world can produce.

In the manures, in the animal manures that go with the land, evaluations that must be assessed to those are in a rotation. First of all, you would have pig and cow, and then sheep and goat, and then rabbit. Rabbit is exceptional. Now each of these is unique. So that if one tried to place one above the other, you could do so, because relatively generally that is so. But whereas one applies sometimes, another one would apply of lesser degree.

At the same time you must admit of Pliny and such people when they said that all domestic animals, domesticated animals, give inferior or slightly inferior manures to what the loose animals do. That's a very interesting matter. Now relative to the pig comes a guano, which is seabird, which I’ll talk about a little bit later. Then you get the poultry manures, which today coming from the trade poultry of course, must not be looked at. The ammonia content is appalling, and the disabuse of the bird makes the whole thing pretty appalling. And indeed, the mushroom composts are all defiled. So we can’t look at many of those.

One’s poultry manure from the yard is thoroughly useable, but one must always remember it's extremely high in the ammonia content, and must be extra broken down, and isn’t possible to use as ordinary manure. I’ll discuss the use of manures with composts, very briefly, when I come to the composts. And of course, composting will be several subjects all on their own. In the leaf molds, deposited by the leaves of the trees, again you have a discrimination of values. There is no question that in the Quercus, the oaks, whether they be the Robur, the annuals or the perennials, the deciduous I mean, the deciduous or the evergreens, they contain qualities that again are above, oceans above, all of the other trees. And next to the Quercus is the Fagus, the beech, in all that it gives. And in both cases it alludes to the timber as well. And then you have, in the trees, practically all the deciduous following, but you must leave out such things as the poplars, particularly the balsam poplar, and such things as walnut, which can be to some degree deleterious.

Again we must look at the whole family of the pines and the firs, and the huge differences there. That they build gum and resin and turpentine, and that this dries and warms the soil. Now wherever you have these trees, you have a raise of temperature, you have a protection in the winter of enormous degrees. You will continue to grow and produce plants under such trees, whereas under oaks they have long ago vanished. And they will be protected by such trees and will survive the most deplorable winters, whereas under evergreens they will not. Here again, do you see, your triplicities of the moon in a similarity of six houses that are stable and six that are unstable. You have it repeated here.

Now you must be very aware of a certain group, that the fir trees are very advantageous to many plants, however there are certain which are excessive in their ultra, ultra removal, such as the Camphora and particularly the Eucalyptus and the balsam poplar. And then you see the bay, particularly Umbellularia of America, which is, of course, not the Laurus nobilis, you understand, but that that is very deleterious and highly poisonous to the soil altogether and to plant life. And so that those that swing right out on the end of the pendulum into the depths of winter, as it were.

In the calciums, we have the use of bone meal, whether it be bird's or animal bones or whatever. We have particularly the oyster shell and the shells of crustace. And then there is, of course, the numerous varieties of limestone rocks. And then we enter the scene of chalk, which produces lime, agricultural lime and basic slag. Basic slag is a variation on lime produced with other minerals. Agricultural lime is a reduced lime, live lime, so that it can be applied to the soil without being overvehement.

Live lime is utterly vehement. It will boil. It will blister the hands. It must be used at those periods of the year when destruction is at its full permission, and at those times only. I will be remarking a little bit more about the use of lime with compost and manure. This can be very overrated and you can induce the pendulum to swing the wrong way to add to destructiveness. Both the manure over-potent and the lime’s over-potent can add to each other and make a plus. This is often not looked at.

Another very important of those calciums, of course, is eggshell. And in many cases there are plants that connect with calciums, which we will talk about to some degree as we come to the plants.

Seaweeds, in all cases, are invaluable to the manipulation of the soil. In most cases, they must be washed out. They must be put out on a place where the salt saline can be washed away by the rains and then piled and rotted. In most cases they rot very quickly when heaped. And they are superb and excellent disinfectant manurings. They vary also tremendously in the pendulum from tremendous to almost nil in their variations. Some of the little Irish seaweeds, that are very small, that you can only pick up little bits by hand here and there, are the most utter ultra, ultra...


[Transcription by G. Haynes, August, 2015]




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