The Maturing of a Vineyard

The Maturing of a Vineyard The maturing of a vineyard is not unlike the maturing of a human being. We are of a culture that idealizes youthful image and behavior. Perhaps that is why so many people enter analysis in their early 40’s: youthful pursuits no longer make sense or work. Dreams reflect unexplored, ignored… Read more »

August: The Fifth Season

August: The Fifth Season In California, August is a kind of fallow month. The following excerpt from Farming Soul: A Tale of Initiation tells why: Ash and the Fifth Season In the Mediterranean-like climate of the Napa Valley, there is a period of summer dormancy that has is often called the fifth season. The grasses are… Read more »

Uninvited Guests (Pests!)

Uninvited Guests (Pests!) When I first started writing The Uninvited Guest: Fire and the New Consciousness, I was thinking about fire. Collectively we banned it from our environment over the last 100 years and now it threatens to return with a vengeance. In this fifth year of severe drought in the West, we are being warned… Read more »

Land Use in the Napa Valley and Consciousness

Land Use in the Napa Valley and Consciousness It is the end of a season and of a year, and we in the Napa Valley are hardly in a sleepy, midwinter’s night space! Land use issues are reaching a boiling point, heated up by the drought and water scarcity, and the decreasing amount of land… Read more »

Biodynamic Farming Heals the Farmer

Biodynamic Farming Heals the Farmer The nonviolent approach does not immediately change the heart of the oppressor. It first does something to the hearts and souls of those committed to it. It gives them new self-respect; it calls up resources of strength and courage they did not know they had. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr…. Read more »

Farming is About Community

Some of the Demeter certified product which is becoming more and more available, including at Whole foods. Yesterday Donald and I attended the National Heirloom Expo at the Santa Rosa, CA, fairgrounds and sat in on two Demeter seminars. The room was packed in the seminar in which Grover Stock and Erik Ohlsen of Permaculture… Read more »

Learning Biodynamics from the Pros: Biodynamic Conference in August

Three volunteer bean plants originally planted from Biodynamic seeds provide enough beans for two of us. This is the third generation of this particular seed line. On August 14-16 will be a Biodynamic Conference at the Rudolf Steiner College in Fair Oaks, CA, Medicine for Earth and Man: The Earthworm, the Cow, and the Bee…. Read more »

Biodynamic Association Listing

Animals are an important part of Biodynamic practices. Not only do they help with weeding, but their manures provide fertility, all part of an important feedback cycle.                 Biodynamic Association Listing The Biodynamic Association website has a new feature in which we farmers, growers, processors and producers are… Read more »

What a Difference 48 Hours… and 7.5 Inches of Rain Makes!

It’s been waiting all winter for this!     Last week this time we could not have imagined that we would receive eight inches in eight days… and 7.5 inches in the last 48 hours, and still going, bringing us to 82% of our normal for this time of year in Napa. Our small irrigation… Read more »

Happy Thanksgiving from Harms Vineyards!

Boey and St. Francis: Thanks for the animals! Happy Thanksgiving from Harms Vineyards! There is so much for which to be grateful this year: the harvests of grapes and lavender; our dear llama Racu who guarded our goats these last sixteen years and passed this fall; our customers who have supported our Biodynamic organic farming… Read more »