Step into Life at White Rose Farm!

Welcome to our blog.
Posted 9/13/2017 8:35pm by Sally Voris .

  

 
Greetings! I am moving into my own personal uncharted territory: I plan to write about working with nature. As a farmer, my most essential work is to restore the invisible web of connections that supports life itself. 

I set a living process in motion, with the right parameters and the right ingredients. Then I let nature weave her magic.  She naturally creates a thousand-fold increase. I enjoy her fruits. When a process is ending, I often help transform the remains into the next living process.

I never know exactly what will happen; there are always unknown factors at play. Sometimes, I misjudge the parameters; sometimes other factors intervene. I learn from most experience. As I have used this approach,  the garden has become more beautiful, bountiful and balanced; the food more delicious and satisfying. 

I have studied biodynamic agriculture for over ten years. This approach, initiated by philosopher Rudolf Steiner in a series of lectures on agriculture in 1924, frames agriculture in the context of the cosmos, the interrelationships between the earth and the heavens, and then with the intimate relationships among all living things. Steiner said that we needed "to learn from the whole of nature...knowledge that can really enter into the inner workings of nature." World-class gardener Alan Chadwick personified this approach. (Visit http://chadwickarchive.org

When I saw images of the flooding in Houston and Jacksonville, I wanated to share what I know about the more subtle processes of nature. For it is not just what we see, but what we feel; it is not just what is visible, but also what is invisible; and then how they are woven together that creates fertility. When one works with all three aspects in a spiritual process, the garden radiates color; it throbs with vitality. What joy!    

I plan to post a blog at least once a week (usually on Wednesdays.) We (the Circle) now have a communications intern from UMBC, Lucas Garner. He will help post the farm's events on the website weekly--on Sundays.

As this is uncharted territory, some of you may choose not to come along. No hard feelings. Please unsubscribe. Those of you who want to receive the blog as an e-mail blast, let me know, I can start such an e-list.

My best to you all! May we all savor our journeys.

Sally 

 

P.S. Here is a delicious quote from Alan Chadwick: 

"

"To take possession of anything is to bind it to oneself. If I cut a tree for wood - select it, fall it, limb it, cut it into lengths, and carry it to the hearth - the warmth I feel in November is very much of my making. If I turn the earth and plant a seed in April, the food I harvest in July is my own in the most direct manner. And yet it isn't at all - and that is another aspect of taking possession, though it appears contradictory. For though I take food from the ground and eat it, and though I know it to be mine, I also know it as a gift. 
 
Possession in this sense is an act of experience which incorporates acknowledgement of our ultimate dependence -- not a holding of title. The food is a gift from the earth and the stars. I make it mine by my labor. One can possess nothing in the absence of an investment of energy. Possession may be nine-tenths of the law, but in the absence of such investment -- essentially spiritual -- it is nothing.
 
Any human experience which is deeply satisfying reverberates with spiritual overtones. A culture which denies such manifestations reduces human effort to toil, wisdom to fact, and it attaches value only to what can be counted or measured.”
~ Alan Chadwick

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 





    TANEYTOWN, MARYLAND                                                                                                    WWW.WHITEROSEFARM.COM

 

Posted 9/7/2017 8:57pm by Sally Voris .

I received this message from a food cooperative near Washington DC where I have sold some of my produce in the past.

“ This morning we received a telephone call from our farmer friend, John Krohn in FL. This man had to cut down his own orange grove by hand several years ago when a blight devastated FL citrus growers. Ever the optimist and realist―a special combination―this 85 year old man rebounded by planting mango and avocado trees. Today, he called to say that the “biggest ever hurricane” is expected this weekend to rip through Florida. He's very worried, as winds will not only strip trees of the fruit but avocados could fly through the house like cannonballs. Therefore, he needs to take them all off the trees this week.

So that this precious fruit does not go to waste, meaning not only a financial loss but a heart loss for this good man, we are writing to see if any of you would like to support by purchasing. 10 lb boxes, still $40 including shipping. You can send a message of love by giving them away to family and neighbors starting a positive chain of love transmission.”

I immediately offered to buy a box of avocados. I also sent the message on to my e-mail list and got several positive responses. Over dinner, I described the situation to a new neighbor. She wondered why this man did not wait to see how badly the hurricane would impact him. My other neighbor, a seasoned farm wife, and I immediately scoped out this man's challenge: here is an 85 yer-old man, in love with his trees and his farm. He is not likely to have help from others as the storm approaches. If the trees are mature, figure 100 trees to the acre and 165 pounds of avocados per tree. Figure three avocados per pound. That's 30 avocados per box, packed for shipping. Can you imagine an 85-year old man even attempting this? His situation is heart-breaking, but farmers are resilient and learn to do what they can.

That is, those of us left in the field. Research shows that roughly 323 million people now live in America. Only two percent are involved in agricultural endeavors. Less than one percent of all agricultural production is organic. Much of that production is on large farms with industrial techniques. So this 85-year-old man is probably one of some 50,000 people in America using his hands to care for the land―less than one in twenty thousand people. Yet, his work and our work as farmers are critical to maintaining a healthy relationship with the land. We are caring for the land. That care is critical!

Are you familiar with relationships based on taking and not caring? If you are, you know that those relationships will not last. At a certain point, the one that is being abused either dies, leaves or becomes unavailable to the other. The relationship effectively ends.

Another friend, who had grown up in Houston, wrote. “ Your piece on the interdependency and intertwining of Nature is critically on target. Part of the reason Houston and a few other cities were so devastated was because there has not been recognition of the impact of Nature on civilization. Houston was built primarily on land used to grow rice. Imagine what that soil is like. Imagine the fragile structure. And the city is now cement city, much more so than when I grew up there. The Bayous of my childhood seemed to contain the waters. We had open fields within sight of my house. There were still farms on the outskirts of the city limits. As a child I could walk to pet horses.

I am more and more convinced that those in power are ignoring Nature's way. I am sure there will be more devastation. Each of us can make a difference in some way, surely.” Yes, surely we can. Let's engage not just our heads, but also our hearts and hands in caring for the land, the natural world and each other. We have plenty of work to do! Let's get to work! 

Sally 

Posted 9/6/2017 1:33pm by Sally Voris .

  

 

 

Hello all! The full moon program for tonight has been canceled because of the rain.

We have also received an urgent message from Spiritual Foods. I am willing to contribute to buy avocados, but 10 pounds is a lot for me. Others of you may want to contribute too. Please contact spiritual foods directly at  <shantiyoga.sol@gmail.com>. Thanks. 

Sally 

Dear Friend of Spiritual Foods, 

Our support for farmers has been strong for the 20 years since we decided to live an ideal; this would not be the first time that we came in to support a farmer in peril and contribute to allow him to continue on his labor of love.

This morning we received a telephone call from our farmer friend, John Krohn in FL. This man had to cut down his own orange grove by hand several years ago when a blight devastated FL citrus growers. Ever the optimist and realist—a special combination—this 85 year old man rebounded by planting mango and avocado trees. Today, he called to say that the “biggest ever hurricane” is expected this weekend to rip through Florida.  He's very worried, as winds will not only will strip trees of the fruit but avocados could fly through the house like cannonballs.  Therefore, he needs to take them all off the tree this week.

So that this precious fruit does not go to waste, meaning not only a financial loss but a heart loss for this good man, we are writing to see if any of you would like to support by purchasing.  10 lb boxes, still $40 including shipping. You can send a message of love by giving them away to family and neighbors starting a positive chain of love transmission.   

Thank You,

Om Shanti,

(Peace be with you)

Durga

 

 

 





    TANEYTOWN, MARYLAND                                                                                                    WWW.WHITEROSEFARM.COM

 

Posted 9/6/2017 1:24pm by Sally Voris .

Hello all! The full moon program for tonight has been canceled. We have received an urgent message from Spiritual Foods. I am willing to contribute to buy avocados. Others of you may want to contribute too. Please contact spiritual foods directly at  <shantiyoga.sol@gmail.com>. Thanks. 

Sally 

Dear Friend of Spiritual Foods, 

Our support for farmers has been strong for the 20 years since we decided to live an ideal; this would not be the first time that we came in to support a farmer in peril and contribute to allow him to continue on his labor of love.

This morning we received a telephone call from our farmer friend, John Krohn in FL. This man had to cut down his own orange grove by hand several years ago when a blight devastated FL citrus growers. Ever the optimist and realist—a special combination—this 85 year old man rebounded by planting mango and avocado trees. Today, he called to say that the “biggest ever hurricane” is expected this weekend to rip through Florida.  He's very worried, as winds will not only will strip trees of the fruit but avocados could fly through the house like cannonballs.  Therefore, he needs to take them all off the tree this week.

So that this precious fruit does not go to waste, meaning not only a financial loss but a heart loss for this good man, we are writing to see if any of you would like to support by purchasing.  10 lb boxes, still $40 including shipping. You can send a message of love by giving them away to family and neighbors starting a positive chain of love transmission.   

Thank You,

Om Shanti,

(Peace be with you)

Durga

Posted 9/5/2017 8:40pm by Sally Voris .

This morning, as I walked into a patch of buckwheat, I was calmed and energized by the intense buzzing of bees around me. On a perfectly clear September day, the bees worked tirelessly and harmoniously to harvest nectar and pollen before winter. Their sounds and activity soothed me after days of news: the flood in Texas, the fires in the west and the threat of nuclear weapons.

Their movements reminded me of the images of people using their own boats to rescue others from the flood in Houston, making one connection at a time. Then a larger question came to me: How can we harness the healing power of nature to restore life to areas damaged by fire and flood?

One winter's evening, I counted 623 kernels from one ear of corn. Corn often produces two ears—more than 1250 seeds--a thousand-fold increase! From my experience as a gardener, that is the magnitude of nature's bounty if we work in harmony with nature.

On my farm, I focus on creating an environment that is beautiful, bountiful and balanced. Sometimes, that means doing an unpleasant chore. This morning, I pulled spiny amaranth from the buckwheat patch. This weed had a fat, fleshy stem and a thorn where each branch meets the stem. Each plant drops thousands of seeds, so the next season, it forms colonies of plants. Its roots were easy to pull in the moist, friable soil; however, so in just thirty minutes, I had reduced the weed's seeds exponentially.

Jeff Poppen, a biodynamic farmer in Tennessee, taught me to plant buckwheat, radish and turnip seeds together in July. The buckwheat loves heat. It comes up quickly and provides shade from the intense sun of August for the other crops and for the soil itself. As the season cools, the turnips and radish grow well. All the plants benefit from growing together, they attract lots of insects, and they build the soil.

As I pulled the weeds, I saw bumblebees, honey bees, native bees, sweat bees, a hornet or two and bees I have never seen before. The honey bees landed on the underside of some flowers, crawled to the top of the flower, collecting pollen and nectar within a second or two. Then they flew to the next cluster. Various butterflies floated from flower to flower, while grasshoppers jumped from one stem to another. The patch was throbbing with vitality: it was a symbiotic community that sustains life itself.

World-class gardener Alan Chadwick advocated such an approach, as did Rudolf Steiner, the founder of biodynamic agriculture. Humanity has only two choices, he said, either start once again to learn from the whole of nature—to enter into the interrelationships of living beings--or allow both nature and human life to degenerate and die off.

When the beekeeper prepared to bring hives to my farm last month, I showed him the patches of buckwheat I had planted. “Bees don't go for buckwheat. Bumblebees do, but honeybees don't,” he said flatly. He had once put hives of bees in a large field of buckwheat my neighbor planted. No bees came. Now they were clearly relishing the buckwheat mid-morning. By midday, they had moved on to a wild grape vine at the top of the garden. What made the difference? I do not know.

I know that diversity and complexity woven together create balance in the garden. A bee flies over one flower and lands on another. A neighbor carries a child in their arms above the water, but gets a raft for the adult. Rescuers found survivors and helped them leave dangerous situations. This morning, I saw a buckwheat patch throbbing with vitality as plants and animals worked synergistically. As we rebuild, let's remember nature. Let's attend to what thrives in the soil, what moves and breathes in the air, what lives and moves in the water. Let's weave together a community of life that sustains us all!

Posted 9/3/2017 7:46pm by Sally Voris .

  

Join us for a magical evening to celebrate the Fall Equinox!

 

Beech Tree Puppets will present a revised version of a Grimm's fairy tale

The Crystal Ball  

September 23 at 5:00 p.m. 

 
"Follow the young Prince on his journey to save his brothers
who have been transformed into animals by an evil sorceress. 
Bravely and against all expectations, he overcomes great challenges,
to save his brothers and win the princess. "
 
The show is 35 minutes. Afterward, the puppeteers will answer questions about their puppets and their performance. A fire circle(weather permitting) and a potluck meal for farm circle members will follow the show.
 
Cost for the puppet show: $10/adult. $7/child,$30/ family. Register here.
 
Hope to see you soon!
 
Sally 

 

 

 

 





    TANEYTOWN, MARYLAND                                                                                                    WWW.WHITEROSEFARM.COM

 

Posted 8/24/2017 8:51pm by Sally Voris .

This essay was recently published in Being Human, a quarterly publication of the Anthroposophical Society in America. The essay was sparked by a deep conversation with Shelden Luz, President of White Rose Circle, Inc. 

In 1924, Rudolf Steiner gave a series of eight lectures to farmers in Poland who wanted to understand why the quality of their food was declining. Those lectures form the basis of biodynamic agriculture. Steiner framed agriculture in the context of the cosmos. He said invisible spiritual forces, acting through the stars, the planets, the sun and the moon, were vital to life on Earth. He asked farmers to imagine their farms as individual living organisms and he gave specific practices to build farm vitality.

After some ten years of farming using biodynamic practices, I noticed that the produce nearly popped with energy and flavor. It was easier to farm. I felt like I was now dancing with a living partner—the farm. I realized that plants don't just grow out of the soil; they lift themselves (or are they pulled?) heavenward. When we are fed by such plants, we get that lift. To come to full flowering; however, the farm needs a farmer to mediate and balance its life processes. As the weather gets more erratic and extreme, it takes more will and skill to keep life on the farm dancing and breathing together!

In other lectures, Steiner spoke about how the Earth exists for the spiritual evolution of human beings. He outlined epochs and cycles of development in humans. Steiner foresaw that forces focused on materialism would become very strong in our time. Those forces deny spirit. It is our challenge, Steiner said, to develop our ability to balance spirit and matter through our hearts. Nutrition is essential to our spiritual development, he asserted. We need food that feeds our souls, our wills and our spirits.

Our current industrial food system completely ignores this aspect of nutrition. The system produces commodities for consumers. It separates us from Nature—the source of our most intimate and immediate connection with Creation. Plants are the hands of God, said world-class gardener Alan Chadwick. When we use our hands in the garden, we touch those hands. There is something in us that goes out to meet every living thing, said theologian Thomas Berry. The inner world of man and the outer world of nature go together, he asserted. We are meant to connect with Nature and be fed by her!

There are, however, tremendous forces seeking to hide this essential truth. Government subsidies and agricultural institutions now encourage farmers to move their operations into controlled environments: hoop houses, green houses, barns and buildings. Plants and animals have less access to fresh air and sunlight. Farmers use well water to irrigate their crops. Well water has predominantly Earth energy, whereas rain water contains vital atmospheric energy. Our food is losing its connection with the cosmic, spiritual forces in sunlight, fresh air, rain and natural rhythms. We become less able to meet the challenges we face--less able even to see the forces that are drawing us downward.

We are the essential players here. We can awaken to that truth. Our birthright is connection, and so is our calling. We are co-creators of our world: what we imagine becomes the future. Can we hold a vision of abundance and hope? Or do we carry the images of despair and devastation that are swirling around us? Can we engage in work to restore wholeness to our lives and to our Earth?

It is not just a matter of where we get our food and how it is grown; it is also vitally important where we give to Nature, how we give to Nature and why we give to Nature. What we do to Nature, we do to ourselves. When we dance with Nature as our partner, we reweave the web of life. We restore health.

White Rose Farm and its Circle were born out of love for life! People will give to this work because they want to cultivate their own souls, they want to honor those who have come before and/or they want to prepare a space of love for those who are coming after. Let's make love the foundation of the New World! There is much to celebrate and much to do....

Sally Voris 

 

Posted 8/19/2017 7:25am by Sally Voris .

  

The land is calling for connection...

and connecting with the land will help us ground and balance the disturbing energy swirling around us.  Join us for a

Corn Roast & Drum Circle
starting at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, August 19.
 
 

Bring friends, a drum or percussion instruments, and prayers, poems, songs, stories and/or dances and food to share. We will gather around the newly refurbished fire circle, share our bounty and bring balance to ourselves and to the land.   

The event is free to farm circle members. (It is easy to become a farm circle member and join a community of people working to restore wholeness to the land, the natural world and each other. ) Cost for others: Adults $10; child $5; family $25.  

The farm has a bounty of fresh corn, potatoes and cabbage. Plan to take some home for a reasonable price. Register here

 

 

 

 





    TANEYTOWN, MARYLAND                                                                                                    WWW.WHITEROSEFARM.COM

 

Posted 8/17/2017 8:52pm by Sally Voris .

  

The land is calling for connection...

and connecting with the land will help us ground and balance the disturbing energy swirling around us.  Join us for a

Corn Roast & Drum Circle
starting at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, August 19.
 
 

Bring friends, a drum or percussion instruments, and prayers, poems, songs, stories and/or dances and food to share. We will gather around the newly refurbished fire circle, share our bounty and bring balance to ourselves and to the land.   

The event is free to farm circle members. (It is easy to become a farm circle member and join a community of people working to restore wholeness to the land, the natural world and each other. ) Cost for others: Adults $10; child $5; family $25.  

The farm has a bounty of fresh corn, potatoes and cabbage. Plan to take some home for a reasonable price. Register here

 

 

 

 





    TANEYTOWN, MARYLAND                                                                                                    WWW.WHITEROSEFARM.COM

 

Posted 8/6/2017 3:02pm by Sally Voris .

  

 

The farm will host a special full moon gathering tomorrow evening at 7:30 p.m. (Sun sets at 8:15 p.m. ) Two fellows just did a fine job rebuilding the fire circle at the farm--it seems just in time for the full moon tomorrow.  All are invited to join us for this event (not just women) which will end around 9:00 p.m. Bring poems, songs, musical instruments or other offerings.   

The Global Sisterhood just sent me this information: 

"This full moon in Aquarius, we invite you to examine what emotional beliefs you hold just below your awareness that could be blocking flow, pleasure, and joy in your life. How are these beliefs limiting you from standing in the truest, most radiant, magnetic expression of yourself as a lover, leader, helper,  humanitarian, and inspiration?

Pay attention to your emotions to discover what beliefs are guiding your life. What stories are asking to be seen and understood so they can be re-written? 

  • Pay attention to your dreams
  • Notice subtle feelings in your body
  • What triggers you?
  • What shuts you down?
  • What awakens and inspires you?
  • What fears come up throughout your day? Do you notice a pattern? What is the belief beneath these fears?


Throughout the next weeks leading up to the new moon, we invite you to journal about these themes.  If you are seeking clarity or reflection from your sisters, feel free to post your discoveries in the Global Sisterhood Facebook Group!

As you choose to do this inner work around this potent full moon, you will be well prepared for an epic and potentially life-changing transformation on the New Moon Solar Eclipse on August 21st!

As sisters, together we will rise as leaders, liberating ourselves from fear, as we "embrace the shadow" and shine brightly in service to our souls, families, communities and world. " 

My heart says this is work worth doing. Join me in spirit or in person if you feel so called. May we transform the world through love.

Sally 

 

 

 

 

 

 





    TANEYTOWN, MARYLAND                                                                                                    WWW.WHITEROSEFARM.COM

 

Quiet time is starting....

Hazel is back! She is pregnant and due midwinter. Our thanks to Leah Mack, at whose farm Hazel and Daisy spent the summer with a virile bull.  Now we want to find Daisy, a pure-bred Jersey, a new home. She is pregnant and due mid-spring. Interested? Please contact me. Thanks. Sally    

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