2022 Events

Next Music Jam  for Members is  May 29   

Biodynamic Barrel Compost Hands-On Workshop

Saturday, May 21, 1:00-4:00 pm

No upcoming events at the moment

Co-Sponsored by White Rose Farm Circle and Chesapeake Biodynamic Network (CBDN)

Workshop led by Abigail Porter


Barrel Compost (BC) is made with cow manure, paramagnetic basalt, and finely crushed organic eggshells that are mixed together for one hour. It is then put into a barrel or brick-lined pit and biodynamic compost preparations (502-507) are inserted. The mixture composts for 3-6 months. This is a highly concentrated compost material that increases fertility and stimulates plant growth.


Barrel Compost preparation was developed in Germany by biodynamic pioneer and researcher, Maria Thun, in collaboration with bio-chemist Ehrenfried Pfeiffer, to mitigate the effects of radioactive fallout from the above-ground atomic bomb testing in the 1940s and 50s. It is useful when access to BD compost is limited and when plants are under stress. It should not be regarded as a long-term substitute for properly made BD compost but is a good way to get all the preps out early before regular compost is ready.


One-third cup of transformed barrel compost is stirred for 20 minutes with 2.5 or more gallons of water for one acre or less and sprayed out on the garden or farm. We will be vortex stirring pre-made BC and applying it to the garden following making BC and getting it into the pit.


Participants will go home with Barrel Compost from Josephine Porter Institute to apply to their own land.

Register by May 7 to ensure there is enough BC for you.

Abigail Porter grew up on the family biodynamic dairy farm with her mother, Josephine Porter, who started making biodynamic preparations after attending a biodynamic conference in Spring Valley, NY, in 1947. Her mother supplied the preparations nationally to farmers and gardeners from 1956 until her passing in 1984. Josephine Porter Institute for Applied Biodynamics was founded in 1985 by Hugh Courtney who had apprenticed with her for seven years to honor her contribution to biodynamics and to ensure that preparations would continue to be available. Abigail served on the board of Josephine Porter Institute for Applied Biodynamics (JPI) for five years (2011-2016) and was co-editor of JPI periodical Applied Biodynamics from 2011 through 2021. She consults, mentors, and gives workshops in beginning biodynamics for backyard gardeners.


Abby Porter   304-258-4410   abbyjporter@gmail.com


For more information on Barrel Compost, also called Cow Pat Pit see:

What Maria Thun has to say about her Barrel Compost

Barrel Compost: Bringing Harmony to the Farm, ACRES USA Article

Educational Programs

Our outdoor natural play space is ideal for children and those young at heart.

A perfect place to bring a group for a picnic, hands-on learning and time in the fresh air!