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Bacterial Endophytes!!  RSS feed

 
                    
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Most people are familiar with mycorrhizal fungi, the beneficial microbes that live in the soil and interface with plant roots. But what about endophytic bacteria? These are beneficial bacteria that live within a plant. Here is a link to one study that found that endophytic bacteria in basil can protect the plant from infection by parasitic fungi, and they also increase growth rates and the production of essential oil! 

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19826860
 
                    
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Here's an endophyte that produces compounds that kill snails! Under experimental conditions, it was active in the soil 30 days after innoculation.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18533493
 
Jordan Lowery
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nice link thanks, you might want to look for the documentary called jewels of the jungle. its about a man who collects endophytic fungi. I have always thought that endophytes could be cultured and used for sustainable agricultural purposes. still working out the kinks though here.
 
Paul Cereghino
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"In nature, root surfaces are almost completely encrusted wtih bacterial cells, so little interaction between the soil and root can take place without some intervening microbial influence.  The world of rhizo bacteria is still largely uncharted."  Brady & Weil 2008

OBserved functions:
stimulation of plant defence against disease
hormonal stimulation and enhanced nutrient uptake (Biswas et al. 2000)
allelopathic mechanism

The googlable term is Rhizobacteria, some specific Genera:  Pseudomonas and Serratia

heres another http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/AR/archive/oct98/rhizo1098.htm

"Apparently, large numbers of beneficial antagonistic organisms colonize the organic material during the final stagges of composting, and the stabilized organic substrate stimulates teh actiity of inigenous beneficial organisms without stimulating pathogens."  Brady & Weil 2008 and tehn references a study by Boulter et al 2002 that supressed Fusarium with well aged composts

This kid of stuff is good to know - I start to wonder if after all is said in done there is a benefit in attempting to manually alter these populations through innoculation or would be better off just cultivating conditions that support them.  Kind of reminds me of the direct  feeding of plants using nitrogen salts, or all the mycorrhizal innoculation, when scientists have a hard time creatign a situation outside a lab where mycorrhizae are not present.
 
                    
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Yes, at this time, it isn't clear to me if the best course is direct inoculation or simply creating a healthy environment. And it makes me wonder about some of the biodynamic techniques and Bokashi ... do these sometimes result in beneficial inoculations? 
 
Emerson White
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Nothing can be inoculated at homeopathic levels, so biodynamics are unlikely to be innoculating anything.
 
rose macaskie
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Emerson white please expand the phrase nothing can be inoculated at homeopatic levels for the ignorant in this like me . rose
 
Emerson White
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In homeopathy you take your substance and dilute it down, through serial dilutions. After you cut one ml of your substance in 99 ml of water you have a [10[sup]-2[/sup]] concentration (homeopathic 1c). Dilute 1 ml of that in 99 ml of water and you hit[ 10[sup]-4[/sup]] (2 C). When you keep doing this you transfer into the realm of homeopathics , 10C is more reasonable for homepathic remedies. at 12C you have [10[sup]-24[/sup]] concentration, 1 molecule per ml has a concentration [2.6568622 x 10[sup]-23[/sup]], so the chances are than not one molecule of your original substance is left in the final dilution. If you look at organisms they are all much much much bigger than a water molecule, and the probability that a single member of the organism will be present will drop much faster than the probability on a molecule.
 
rose macaskie
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        I knew that about homopathy that they dilute things to an incredible degree and then sort of innoculate you with the tiny remnant of what you have diluted in lots of water or somthing that has the same effect on the body, i am not sure of that bit. What does that have to do with plant roots is it that they are more likely to get innoculated with a tiny bit of bacteria and a lot of water than with a lot of bacteria. 
        Is there some confusion about innoculation? They innoculaate us so we wont get the illness bacteria or so we will fight to get over it both by the methods ordinary doctors use as by the methods homeopathy uses and when Paul Wheaton talks about innoculating luguminouse plants or paul stamets talks about innoculating plants or other things with fungi, they seem to mean trying to get or bacteria or fungi  things to grow on the substrate or plant rather than trying to protect the plant from the substance they are innoculating. It maybe that a homopathic person would discover that you can get things to take more easily to invade the plant if you use a little not a lot anyway. rose
     
 
Emerson White
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Well, inoculation is introducing an organism, which (done right) can confer immunity to smallpox, but you are thinking of immunization, a process that only works in vertebrates. We have immune cells called B-cells and T-cells, and a number of very complex processes happen where in the immune cells build antibodies and test them against the antigens presented to them. With out any substance to build antibiodies to the antibodies aren't made :/. Of course this process doesn't happen in plants or soil organisms, just vertebrates.

The Paul's are talking about inoculating with cultures of bacteria and fungi respectively, not homeopathic dilutions.

Homeopaths aren't using a little, they are using literally none, if you look at the literature they make a point of saying that the greater the dilution the more "powerful" the treatment, so a 30C or a 300C would be considered more effective than a 12 C, obviously these dilutions are well beyond the point of none, assuming pure water is used.
 
rose macaskie
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 i heard that homopahty works and they do put a bit of what ever they know will work and then whash it out how does that work does it leave an imprint in the water?a special energy. you think there would be no molecule left . i though t and even if there were ther would normally be such things in tiny quantities all over the place.
 I found it interesting reading about all the questions they ask their guinea pigs who have to note there responses to different substances. It is interesting that normal medicine does not do that, have healthy people trying medicines and writting down their phisical response to them.
    Formal medicine treats people as if they could not possible have a valuable comment on what happened to them or it often does, there is even a book  of Oliver Sacks, the neurologists, about how he broke his leg skiing and learnt how painfull and frustrating it was to be a patient. They told him to move his toes when it came to the phisiotherapy part of his treatment and he told them he had no control over his toes they weren't interested. In the end, after his recovery, he had a special test done and he had lost a lot of nerve connection or some such. They weren't interested in the strange psychological reactions that made him feel very odd he had on first standing up. The floor first seemed miles away and then really close and while he was trying to  return to normal perceptons they were totally unsympathetic only trying to make him walk, they did not listen hard enough to understand he was having problems of a mental type that were too absorbing and confusing for him to turn his attention to trying to walk.  agri rose macaksie.
 
Emerson White
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If you want to look at the evidence for a treatment pubmed is a good place to start. If you want to discuss the evidence on the Homeopathy issue I'd be happy to respond in the meaningless drivel sub-forum.
 
rose macaskie
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Do you think homopahty is meaningless drivel. do you disapprove of it, or do you simply think it has no place here. You brought up the subject. rose
 
Emerson White
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I do not think that homeopathy has been shown to have an effect beyond placebo, but it isn't herbal medicine or wild craft or permaculture so the catch all forum is where it belongs.

Jonathan actually brought it up, although he used to word biodynamic (which is intensive organic plus homeopathy).
 
rose macaskie
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  I must look up biodinamic . I am used to people who deny the imprtance of all that is not traditional medecine or traditional whatever, however much proof there is that what ever works even when no one understands understand why. It is like the global warming skeptics, nothing will make them even consider the arguements of the global warming believers. THe thing  is wherther it is real or hnot we want to act on the safe side and stop behaving in a way that looks as if it will lead to a lot of trouble.
    When i don't understand things i go on studying them even so if they seem interesting to me and enough people say they work and all you can say is there is no proff of how they work but they seem to work so i will not state i am sure either way but i am not willing to stop studying them because i dont know nor it seems does anyone, how they work. There are some such subjects i have decided are definately negative but others go on seeming to me to show signs of being positive.
      If i mention something my interlocutor disaproves of, they always take it that i am saying i can prove that this thing works. I am often only considering them, i will go on giving seriouse consideration to such disciplines when they seem worth it to me, though doing so seems to make their detractors very cross and wish to oblige me to behave like them and believe what they do.
    It is incredible how far adults will go to oblige others to have their own beliefs and opinions. They don't just argue their own points of veiw they start coercing you actually menacing you and will not stop however badly they have affected your social life already, attacking peoples social position by moral and intellectual destruction is both a way of menacing others you let them know you are going to do it if they don't fall into line and a way of reducing them,  you actually attack them morally and intellectaully. Other adults with different points of veiw  will try to reduce you menace you and change data to bring you into line, ordinary adults behave like totalitarian regimes in their effort to bring everyone into line with their own view points.  agri rose macaskie.
 
Emerson White
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The tagline for biodynamic agriculture is that it "treats the whole farm as an organism" which is laudable but really it is the organic practices of those farming around Rudolf Steiner plus some formulas that he derived through Anthroposophy, a belief system he developed where it a human can introspect to learn about the natural world, kind of a throwback to the Pythagorean Idealists who would go into the caves and meditate on the natural world. Like homeopathy it depends on how you research it. If you look for there claims you will find endless material, enough to spend your whole life reading, but it you look for more rigorously controlled studies you will find few, typically with less profound results, and most well below a reasonable level of significance.

Pubmed is a really good resource, not all of the papers there are legitimate, but all of them could at least be called evidence. I wish I had access to full text in Current Microbiology.
 
                    
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Emerson White wrote:
Jonathan actually brought it up, although he used to word biodynamic (which is intensive organic plus homeopathy).


That is a factually incorrect description of biodynamics.

Emerson White wrote:
Nothing can be inoculated at homeopathic levels, so biodynamics are unlikely to be innoculating anything.


I don't believe in homeopathy, but I don't believe your statements, either. There are a number of particular composting procedures and sprays used in biodynamics that seem to function as conventional bacterial inoculants. These involve gathering and fermenting specific materials in a way that favors the growth a few types of specific microbes. It doesn't matter if they use homeopathic lingo or not - they are still spraying trillions of selected bacteria, and that is not so different than applying Bacillus thuringiensis to control an insect pest, or applying a few ounces of Rhizobium inoculant to an acre of legumes to encourage nitrogen fixation. I am not endorsing the homeopathy or astrology components of biodynamics, but from what I understand of that approach, there are many procedures that could be beneficial in spite of a sprinkling of some mumbo-jumbo.

When Europeans first went to South America, the natives told them that the spirit of a certain tree could protect them from malaria. Some Europeans immediately rejected this on scientific grounds ("Spirits do not exist!", others on religious grounds ("Spirits are evil!". But those who weren't so closed-minded found that a tea of the bark of the Cinchona tree did actually help treat malaria. The natives didn't know what quinine was, their explanation' was imbued with elements of the supernatural, but so what? Their ideas contained valuable truth, even if those ideas were not complete and contained some fanciful ideas. I suggest that a rational, open mind would consider biodynamics in the same way, rather than immediately dismissing it because a superficial inquiry revealed that they speak of spirits.

Here is a published study from researchers at the USDA and University of Washington that compared biodynamic composting to traditional composting. They found that the biodynamic preparations did result in a change in the microbial ecology of the compost, and that this resulted in higher temperatures, higher cation exchange capacity,  and higher nitrate levels... evidence that some biodynamic procedures are in fact microbial inoculations. This can be validated and explained in terms of mainstream science.

http://www.ars.usda.gov/SP2UserFiles/Place/36450000/Products-Reprints/2000/865.pdf
 
Emerson White
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As I said 85% organic, 15% magic.

I've read a few studies on biodynamic compost, the one you mentioned is seriously flawed, there control is almost worthless. They are composting dairy farm waste (cow poop and a little spilled feed) and adding the biodynamic preparations (essentially anaerobic precomposting herbaceous plants). Heck If you add plants to your compost you will get a more diverse mixture of organisms. There was another study done more recently (I'll have to find it) where they mixed the compost up and put it on crops of various sorts, and they got mixed results (not statistically significant to prove anything) but they weren't reported as mixed results, they were reported as "Oh wow, in 2002 this test plot did X% better than its non-biodynamic counterpart, and in 2003 that test plot did y% better than its not bd counterpart!" neglecting to mention at all the years where it did W% or Z% worse. It's long on talk, short on testing. I do not think the quinine analogy is a good one. Primarily that sounds like a wordchoice conflict, especially because there was literally no one brought up to speak both native & european languages. Secondly the native Americans had actually tried stuff and watched for effect, Steiner vouchsafed a deep inner conviction and never put rubber to road.

The kind of bacteria who live inside of plants are more likely to be found in health wild populations, or failing that, long standing agricultural fields that do not practice "clean field" agriculture.
 
                    
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Emerson White wrote:
... They are composting dairy farm waste (cow poop and a little spilled feed) and adding the biodynamic preparations (essentially anaerobic precomposting herbaceous plants). Heck If you add plants to your compost you will get a more diverse mixture of organisms.


Yes, and that was my original point - they are adding micro-organisms, and it could be beneficial. Although they did add equal amounts of soil to both the experimental piles and the control piles, which should have been loaded with micro-organisms of all sorts, and yet the compost piles which got the biodynamic treatment were quite different.  Maybe there is a simpler way to achieve the same results - I am not interested in biodynamic rituals, except to the degree that they lead to different results.



There was another study done more recently (I'll have to find it) where they mixed the compost up and put it on crops of various sorts, and they got mixed results (not statistically significant to prove anything) but they weren't reported as mixed results, they were reported as "Oh wow, in 2002 this test plot did X% better than its non-biodynamic counterpart, and in 2003 that test plot did y% better than its not bd counterpart!" neglecting to mention at all the years where it did W% or Z% worse. It's long on talk, short on testing.


Well, if someone can't do statistics and research design properly, their studies should be rejected for that reason. But are we talking about the same researchers, or are we sliding towards faulty generalizations? The fact that one person somewhere did a flawed study on biodynamics doesn't carry over to all studies of biodynamic methods.


I do not think the quinine analogy is a good one. Primarily that sounds like a wordchoice conflict, especially because there was literally no one brought up to speak both native & european languages. Secondly the native Americans had actually tried stuff and watched for effect,


What? You are saying that pre-scientific animists don't describe the world in terms of spirits or vital forces?  Sure, the Amazonian Indians were involved in trial and error, but it was not always systematic, and their knowledge system was interwoven with mystical beliefs. The conquistadors repressed indigenous agriculture and herbalist practices because they included both religious and practical elements. 

Also, I am not an expert but see no conclusive proof that all of biodynamics was invented by Steiner only from abstract reflection. He may have included elements from folk agriculture around him. He may have made observations on nature and discovered various effects or principles. He may have performed trials of different things. Clearly, there are things in biodynamics that you and I think are silly and irrational, but I think it is wrong to say that it is only conventional organics plus magical nonsense. I suggest that there may be practices unique to biodynamics which are actually beneficial to the ecosystem and yield.

Likewise, you have mischaracterized Pythagoras. Although Pythagoras may have put too much emphasis on pure reason, he did engage in empirical observation of real world phenomena, and the work of Pythagoras and his students resulted in major contributions to our geometry, number theory, music, etc. Consider his ideas on musical scales, which were reportedly derived after hearing the pounding sounds from a blacksmith shop, which was determined to have anvils which were of size ratios.    We do not reject the idea of (A-squared equals (B-squared plus C-squared)) simply because it was the product of a man who liked to talk about mysticism.


The kind of bacteria who live inside of plants are more likely to be found in health wild populations, or failing that, long standing agricultural fields that do not practice "clean field" agriculture.


Yes, perhaps  - but the risk of spraying plants of a particular species with a fermented homogenate of their own kind is that any pathogen could be multiplied and dispersed - plants that appear healthy may not be.  Different composting methods may allow us to develop inoculants which are not pathogenic to plants, but which are beneficial to an agricultural system. 

 
Emerson White
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*No, but it's nothing special about biodynamic practices, it's adding plants. If I took cow manure and added a mix of yard debris I'm pretty sure I'd beat out the cow manure with just yarrow in elk bladder buried for a few months. There were two variables in the experiment, how much plant matter was added to the compost,m and how much biodynamic practice was happening. We KNOW that the plant matter has the effect observed, so its hardly a test of biodynamic to have done that experiment.
Lets say I was selling an eggwash that I said would make eggs stronger, applied with kevlar. I could take 20 eggs, cover 10 of them with my eggwash (and Kevlar) and the other half I could just stand up. Then I could shoot them all with a .22 and by gosh I'm sure I'd come out with proof that my eggwash really helped those eggs to survive.

*It's not that they didn't design a powerful enough experiment, its that there observed effect was patchy and random, yet they still reported it as if it were a positive result. "It works! [sub][size=5pt](except when it doesn't)[/size][/sub]"

*I'm saying that they may have attributed it to the spirit of the tree, or the vital force, or whatever. But had there been a speaker fluent in both languages and familiar with the bark of the quinine tree (s)he would have said as a matter of fact "If you have malaria eat the bark of that tree and you will feel better" and it would have been tried and snapped right up.

*He certainly did take up some of the practices of other farmers around him, he might not have meant to, he might have meant to. What matters is that he thought of things he pulled from thin air to be just as valid, he thought there was an akashik (sp?) field to tap into, and that casts it all into suspicion. BD farming gets tremendous attention, and lots of followng, if chemical bath sterilization had as little evidence as BD over traditional organic then no one would follow it.

*I am not discounting the contributions of the pythagoreans (the man himself probably was not what was boasted of him, even if he did exist) especially to geometry (which can be figured out by thinking) but they themselves felt that they could use logic to deduce the nature of the world, that is what I am referring too.

*Indeed, unless you isolate then inoculate anything you could do to introduce a mutualistic symbiote to a parasitic one.
 
                    
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I agree that more research is needed to conclusively say that something beneficial is going on, and that it is a consistent effect. Your alternative explanation is possible, but not there is no evidence proving it to be true. I think it is quite possible that particular plants tend to harbor large populations of particular microbes - for example, wheat straw is fairly high in Bacillus subtilis, banana leaves tend to be rich in Rhizopus, etc. Specific compost methods using small amounts of particular plants fermented in particular ways could lead to inoculants with particular properties.

Not sure I follow the egg-wash metaphor. Kevlar will stop the bullet from penetrating, but it still transmits the energy to the eggs. They would all be smashed. Gedankenexperiment fails, but for a different reason.
 
Emerson White
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Okay um... its corrosive and the egg must be immersed in it, so it has to be kept in a thick stainless steal cup at all times ...
 
rose macaskie
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      I have been looking up biodynamic agriculture, what fun it is! It takes us straight on to the sort of activity Homer or Bart Simpson would enjoy, away from what Marge  might like, from the, “I know a bank were wild time blows, where oxlips and the nodding violets grow, quite over canopied by white woodbine by sweet musk roses and eglantine. There sleeps Titania”, of Midsummer Night’s Dream to the witches of Macbeth, calling the woman who eats chestnuts a “rump fed runion” and showing off with glee the finger one of the witches has obtained from the body of a sailor washed up on the shore.  It takes us to the world of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn of wandering around all day with a dead cat they mean to swing around in a grave yard at night.

  Here is a recipe for a mixture you can sprinkle on your compost  to help it along from the Wikipedia article on biodynamics.

“Yarrow blossoms are stuffed into the urinary bladder from red deer and placed in the sun during summer, buried in the earth during winter and retrieved in spring”. You inoculate your compost heap with a teaspoon of the resulting substance and another of the several other witch like preparations you have made.

and to combat weeds-:
      "by collecting the seeds of the weeds and burning them above a wooden flame that was kindled by weeds. The ashes from the seeds are then spread on the fields then lightly sprayed with the clear urine of a sterile cow (the urine should be exposed to the full moon for six hours), this is intended to block the influence of the full moon on the particular seed and make it infertile".
and to stop field mice. or insects. The insect recipe would be a bit different from this mouse one but similar.
    "deploy ashes made from field mouse skin when Venus is in the scorpius constellation".

  These are a few of the recipes given, you can find them and others looking at the Wikipedia article on biodynamic. They are really way out. You can see where sepp holzer got his way of keeping venison off his trees by using a mess made from cooking bones to a frazzle in an iron cauldron from.

Some of the potions are mixed with a lot of water in the last instance and so somewhat like homeopathic beverages though with exotic ingredients . I think the homeopaths are a boring bunch given to taking boring things like watered down apples, sunflowers or buttercups. 
    The biodynamic recipes call for a wider variety of ingredients than most people can get their hands on. Unless you are a farmer hunter, who butchers their own livestock, the peritoneum of cows for example.

      Biodinamics sounds  as if it uses the sympathetic magic  that the BBC gardening program maker, Geoff Hamilton, writes about in his book “The Ornamental kitchen Garden”, that is about organic methods though they aren’t mentioned in the title, as a medieval practice. His gives this example of sympathetic magic, that they use the skull of an owl to put off mice, using the logic that if owls eat mice their skulls will put mice off and stop them hanging around your garden.
      Sympathetic magic is interesting to organic people because it lead people in medieval times to mix their plants. To give Geoff Hamilton’s examples, to put their onions next to their apple trees so the onions would taste of apples. Sympathetic magic stopped them growing things in lines or patches and they grew things well, it is one proof that you don’t need to grow things all together.
  Geoff Hamilton says that growing things in lines is a farming practice that is economically important in big scale vegetable growing because being able to pass a hoe easily between the rows is important in these circumstances. He says that in a garden were space is more important than reducing the work load, which is not to great anyway because you are only growing for the family, leaving a lot of space between plants is silly.

    It sounds as if Rudolf Steiner’s ideas on biodynamic, he was the creator of the system, are a mixture of  homeopathy and organic ideas on composting, and medieval ideas on magic. Maybe in Germany a lot of the medieval ideas have survived. Rudolf Steiner who is German seems to use them and sepp holzer who lives in Austria, which is near Germany also. My grandmother grew chives under her apple trees and she also grew time under them. It maybe that some medieval traditions remained in various places.  Agri rose macaskie.

     
 
Emerson White
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I will grant you that it is fun to play Bart/Homer, but I will also point out that progress is made by people like Lisa and Professor Frink, and it takes a Marge, a Lenny, a Carl, a Moe, a Skinner, a Mrs. Crabapple, a Flanders and a Grounds Keeper Willie to clean up the mess that Bart/Homer make. It takes a lot more work to figure out what is working and what is not than it does to simply guess and make things up, and people guessing and making things up takes resources that could be better spent doing things that help. That is why I'm such a stick in the mud about biodynamics. It makes a lot of claims to scientific solvency, but they are false claims, because they are  Bart but want the respect that Lisa gets, this is my big beef with it. If you want the respect, and to earn the right to say that it works, you have to do the leg work to show that it works, not just make the claims over and over, that is just noise, and it wastes everyones time.
 
rose macaskie
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          I don't know hardly anything about biodynamic but i have read a bit about homeopathy, They do a lot of research to find out what products work. They are interesting for their scientific approach.
    You say you don't like it if things aren't scientific but it is beginning to sound as if you turn down all activities that are not mainstream. It sounds as if you have a deep suspicion of things that are fringe, so deep you do not even turn them over seriously nor would you do controlled experiments to weigh up their importance or seriously consider all the circumstances that may lead to giving parts of them some weight, like that animals or some of them, have an aversion to places that have to do with dead animals. My grandmothers cows got nervous if she used dry blood as a fertilizer on the garden and the horses did not like passing the spot a herd of cows sacrificed because they had foot and mouth disease had been burned in according to her sister.

    One of the very interesting things about homeopathy is how it studies substances, how it uses healthy people and lots of them to take any substance they are studying be it apples or sulfur in small quantities, to  see how it effects them. How meticulously all inclusive the list of reactions  homeopathies human guinea pigs have to look out for in themselves when they try a substance being studied by homeopathic doctors and how it tries out the reactions of humans to all things, not just a supposed medicine. Their study of the effect of all substances on people.

        The family doctor we had as a children pooh poohed the importance of having your temperature absolutely normal though he always took our temperature when we were ill. He  aid that normal, in temperature terms, had been decided by studies on people in hospital rather than studies on your normal healthy person and on a small number of them, so he  did not think it was worth much, at least not if you were just a bit below or above normal. I am often a bit below normal when I feel ill. So, so much for the more established forms of science always working absolutely scientifically.

    People do write about things that they have observed once, it is fine to do so and those who read it know that it is only the experience of someone on one occasion. The people you are criticizing seem to have left you in no doubt about the skimpiness of their trail of the system they were experimenting with, so they could not be said to have deceived you.     
    Maybe you think others are not as intelligent as you and will perceive a comment to be as weighty as a scientific study? It is as normal as it is sad  to find people who think others have no judgment or don’t know that people cannot develop their judgment without listening to a lot of different ideas, people who cut others off from learning instead of helping them to learn because they believe they wont know how to pick through the information.
        Freedom of religion say is not a freedom that is only applied to the scientist of proven worth, it is allowed to every stupidest poorest woman too.
        Another related phenomena is that it is incredible how cross adults can get if you are interested in themes they don’t like and how they are as careless about finding out if you are right or not, or exactly which bits you take on and which bits you don’t of say bio dynamism, as they are violent about heading you off. If you are interested in a thing they aren’t interested in they feel that you have cheated on the group.
      Paternalism consist of a paralyzing reduction of other peoples activities because you consider them less able than you. You want to take the risks that are involved in getting to a higher level, like to read other peoples experiences, activity that allows you to learn though you might be taught something that was not true like that chemical fertilizers are good for the soil, when they do for it unless applied with great care they are to strong and burn the life in the soil even worms say.  You want to better yourself at a risk and if you did not society would not get anywhere but you find an excuse to stop others doing the same.
  Paternalism keeps women, the poor and those of another races down, it is destructive. 
    I have just observed that the leaves of one of my cactuses are looking a funny color, i gave it a plant fertilizer one with humic acids in it and i even gave it two doses in one week, the second dose of fertilizers yesterday and so when i saw its leaves were discolored today and I thought, this plant has an adverse reaction to that much fertilizer, this is a comment not a scientifically proved fact . It still may increase the range of things people who have just started gardening look out for in their plants and help them understand them even if it turns out not to be true. My experience is that the reaction positive or negative to fertilizers is rapid.
      To be proven scientifically the result must be achieved many times and I think people know this and realize when others are talking of something they have reason to believe will happen as a result of something they have observed and something that has been scientifically proven. Agri rose macaskie.
 
Emerson White
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I don't dislike things that aren't science, I dislike things that aren't science that claim that they are science, like homeopathy.

Yes Homeopathy does extensive "testing" on well people, a process called "proving". They take a substance and give it to healthy people, then record if it cures nausea, or if they stub their toe in a door, or if the jealous husband of the woman they have been having an affair with comes and shoots them in the shoulder. Then that substance is then diluted to homeopathic concentrations (less than one molecules of substance per liter) and is taken on faith to cure nausea, stubbed toes, and gunshot wounds to the shoulder.  Not clinical trial is ever done on the final product, well no positive clinical trial with moderately good controls has ever been done. The most important part in making it scientific, checking the pudding for proof, is never done. It's not how much time and energy and money you spend crafting your product and your beliefs, its how careful you are in the process. Homeopathy is sloppy, astrology is sloppy, these are the two major components that distinguish Biodynamic farming from other intensive organic farming techniques.

They are not likely to deliver the bacterial endophytes that are needed, the burden of proof rests with them, and they have utterly failed to show anything like proof, they are simply using flowery language and grandiose claims. They claim repeatedly to have scientific backing (especially the homeopathy community, I've seen that claim tens of thousands of times, literally, tens of thousands of times) but they don't, that is a lie that has been repeated again and again, and it is a lie about science; I am very fond of science, and seeing it dragged through the mud like that makes me extremely angry.
 
Emil Spoerri
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I agree that biodinamics and homeopothy are not science based and I would not make the claim.

However, a large portion of what both do does work, often better than conventional medicine.

Question. Why is it that COUNTRIES and GOVERNMENTS in some places in the world actually pay for people to be treated with homeopathy?

Why is science so great? It appears to me that the negative has and will continue to outweigh the positive.
 
Emerson White
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Governments make mistakes. The British Royal Family for instance is very pro-homeopathy, so they have strong armed the British NHS into paying for it, the Brits actually just did a HUGE, MONUMENTAL, GIGANTIC review of all the homeopathy literature and interviewed all of the big players in Homeopathy in Britain and came to the resounding conclusion that homeopathic remedies rely on placebo effect and that no other mechanism is at work, and that the government of the UK should stop paying for homeopathy, because it is just an expensive placebo. Similarly (while we are on the subject of mistakes) there are governments who pay Christian pastors, and governments who pay to have them shot, so they can't both be right.

As for the second question, because Science delivers the goods. Thanks to science we get to live literally three times as long, thanks to science having to experience your infant dying in your arms is now a rare (in most of the world) event, instead of an extremely common event (as it was globally for all classes of people just 400 years ago. It's science that gets us pictures of the globe from space, and micrographs of the life in the soil, science that teaches us to ward of disease effectively, and how we get to peak behind the curtain and get to understand the poetry woven into the fabric of reality.

Sloppy science is better than no science, and good science is better than sloppy science, but in the end science is for ideas what selective breeding is for plants. It's all about rejecting false ideas, like rouging out unproductive plants.

Sepp used some science when he made his ponds, he dug one and it didn't hold water, disconfirming his notion that he could just dig and have a pond, then he observed a pig tamping down the surface of its wallow and he followed its example and he was successful. If he were practicing Homeopathy or Anthroposophy (biodynamics) he would have been struck by the idea that he could dig a hole and put water in it and have a pond (his original idea) but then after it didn't work his next step would have been to advertise that his empty pond had water in it, to go around the world telling people about all the water in his pond, to file lawsuits against anyone who said his pond was empty, to decry as NAZI's those offering proof that there was no water in the pond and to tell us all about why it doesn't look like there is any water even though there "really is".
 
rose macaskie
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      Is it sloppy of you to start talkin gof people who stub their toe on the door, have unfaithfull wives and so on when you are talking of homeopathic studies? I think it is
      I have never bought their stuff but it must sell well here, all the chemists hold it.
      I take great care to look up and look up agian the things i talk about. I often mention my soirces so others can cheque on them and such so i dont know how you can talk to me about the importance of whats sloppy or not.
      I was, when i spoke of Homer and Marge, contrasting human joy in love and flowers, with their joy in mud toads say and a good battle, something that often happens within the same breast rather than there being some who like one thing and some another. Lots of people like both within reason and that people even adults like mud and toads is something people somtimes forget when they are promoting something and if you care about that something it is better to take everything that bares on it into consideration. I was not contrasting the pros and cons of a more careful or less carfull attitude to things.
      If we are to talk of Homer and Marge and all the advantages of each, well, Marge did need his help when she tried to take some young on a boy scouts type thing, camping in the wood, she was trying to start her own youth hostel or some such, when her nice techniques were no measure for her competitors who played dirty.
      Also Homer might not be as scientific as Marge and Maggie but then he is not as bad as most normal men, Marge can correct him without getting hit or for that speak to him without being hit, and he even acknowledges the truth of what she says instead of behaving as if anything she said was ridiculouse, that turns him into a saint. He does not cut her out, or down her so as to increase his possibilities of looking more  like the great wise male by making her look like your silly little female or look sad and seriouse so everyone thinks he is the long suffering one when he is the one who says jump and people jump. He does not  ignore her totally, because its below his male dignity to talk to her. He is a pretty nice guy.
      He is not a lounge potatoe, though he is said to be one. He may take Marge to see a car sale instead of something more femenine but he is always doing something and the family with him. How many girls will marry lounge potatoes thinking they will have an active a life as does Marge , only to find out their husbands are real lounge potatoes, who wont get off the sofa except to go to the pub, another thing Homer hardly ever does though he is supposedly given to holding up the bar. The girls who marry lounge potatoes hoping they will be like homer will find they are with people who really do  spend their time in the pub,. rose macaskie.
 
Emerson White
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No, it is sloppy of homeopaths to use them as proving, not for me to talk about what homeopaths really do. Reflecting on the sloppiness of others does not imply sloppiness on ones own part. My source for this is primarily Edzard Ernst, the internationally respected professor of alternative medicine, who was a Homeopath until he examined closely how the remedies were devised.

As I tried to intone before, you can look up things a whole lot, you can search endlessly, you could read forever, but you have to look in the right places to really get the full measure of things. I may not know what Homeopaths use Arnica to "treat" or what they do with Homeopathic Sulfur, but I've looked in the right places to know that they don't have any proof that it works, simply a large number of anecdotes, and I know enough about human cognition to know that a whole lot of stock is put into anecdotes when we should not if the truth is our concern. It's not enough to be doing a lot of research, we also have to be doing the right kind of research, lest we drift into Cargo Cult Science territory.


You seem to be going down another path with the Simpsons analogy and I think perhaps it's being taken a bit far, If you start another thread in the appropriate but unfortunately named subforum I'd be happy to discuss the various sociopolitical themes and the implications for gender inequity and feminism.
 
rose macaskie
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    You were sloppy enouugh to think that my comparason between Homer and Marge was a question of who was most concientiouse when i was talking about who enjoyed a bit of mud and who enjoyed flowers and bird song.
    Not giving people room for sloppyness is one way to paralyse them. I understand that you don't have to read what i write with great atention or can decide to take a tangent you ask people to always get things right they wont be able to move that way.

    it is my experience with homers or lets say more fairley the grandfather Gilmore of the gilmore girls a good example of machist. heis wife has been totally shut up on all but stupidities . that they down women because they are so sure of women  being stupid that they are sloppy listeners and so hear what they expect to hear,  women saying something stupid. Women get so weary of trying to say anything that makes sense and getting done down if they do, that they stop talkijg of more than the roast and clothes and such and i sit and say head in my hands thinking what  happened to all those good students at school who were interested in so many things including stupid ones but so many other things.

    It is fair to talk about human love of dirty pavements covered in chewing gum, mud, toads, and such, it effects all parts of life, it includes their fascination for poisons like pesticides and herbicides, which comes under the subheading in the list of different types of nastyness of the "Frakenstien Complex", love of and fascination for magick potions no matter how destructive they are this extends to a dislike of mild medicines. long slow deaths surronded by machines.
 
      You have not mentioned that homeopatic doctors train as normal ones before training in homeopahty, nor have you talked of how many people their sloppy methods kill and as you are so keen to find evidence evidence to down them that is strange.
      If there was a doctor in homeopathy who only discovered after practricing for years finds out what substances he is using and in what quantities, it is hard to believe in him, i have only read a little about homeopahty and that is all i know.
      I look for information in all the places i find and if can't be blamed for not banging into the right one no  one knows everything. I present the side of things i have heard of it is up to others to present theirs.  You are not informing of what you know you are trying you are fencing the subject off instead of reviewing it scientifically. you idea is to say we ought not to study it.. rose macaskie.
 
rose macaskie
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I have remembered  a fact that would back up homeopathy. Farmers use it, i saw it on a documentary, they use enormouse quantities of some sort of homeopatic compound to stop mites in hens if i remember right. Not cranky organic farmers, if you like to think of them that way, but those who have a lot of animals in a small space purely business man farmers. There are bits of information out there that suggest thai homeopahty works at least for some things. agri rose macaskie.
 
Emerson White
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Go back and reread your post, maybe watch a little more Simpsons, Homer doesn't enjoy flowers more than Marge, and Bart certainly has no love for nature when compared to Lisa. As I understood it the analogy was about people who are empiracists and people who are more cautious and plotting in there approach to questions, and that is what I replied to.

I'm not going to be able to follow a Gilmore Girls analogy, I'm sorry, I've just never watched the show. I'm just going to hold off on responding to that and the next paragraph, because I'm not sure I've anything to say about the.

Some Homeopathic doctors get training as real doctors first, but they are by far the minority. Most Homepaths receive their degrees from unaccredited schools, I actually have a PhD in Homeopathy from an unaccredited online "school", and that qualifies me to practice in something like 33 states in the US and the better half of the EU, even though I've never set foot in a classroom for it, and obviously don't know which remedy does what. The standards for manufacture are even less stringent, I can manufacture anywhere in the US with out any kind of license at all.

As for how many people they kill no one keeps records of that, though with Homeopathy alone there is very little danger from the remedies themselves, the big danger is not getting treated at a real doctor, and wasting money. http://whatstheharm.net/homeopathy.html In the context of this discussion the harm is spending time and effort trying to increase the bacterial endophytes when really all you are doing is interfering with your planting cycle and sprinkling water on your plants.

Please look homeopathy up on [ur=http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/l]Pubmed or look at what the British Medical Association  [url=http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/alternativemedicine/7728281/Homeopathy-is-witchcraft-say-doctors.html]says about Homeopathy , and these are people who can prescribe Homeopathic remedies too, so they aren't cutting at their competitors ([url=http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2010/05/17/british-medical-association-homeopathy-is-witchcraft/]blog post ).

I don;t think the fact that farmers use is stands as evidence that it works (all though in massive amounts it may amount to washing the birds, which might actually help) that is evidence that farmers believe it works, but my original thesis was that not everything that people believe is true. Carl Sagan said it best "Skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep thoughts can be winnowed from deep nonsense."
 
Emerson White
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I would much rather be taught by someone who cares whether they are telling th truth or a fantasy. I think you are bringing in other things into this thread that aren't overly apparent in how they relate to the discussion. I'm sorry that you've been worried about sounding stupid.

As for ushering people away from ideas like homeopathy or biodynamics, I've done a lot of evaluation of the techniques and really its not worth it for every single person to waste hundreds of hours a piece reading about things that do not have any evidence for efficacy beyond placebo, its just a lousy way to run a society.  I could list you hundreds of worthless technologies and you could spend a lifetime "researching" each one and coming to your own conclusion, but it would be a waste of a lifetime. Homeopathy and astrology will never be able to physically bring a bacterium into existence, if you have evidence to the contrary (and I mean solid evidence, not a collection of anecdotes) then you are just wasting time arguing against the truth. The vast majority of people, including most of the defenders of homeopathy, have no idea how it is supposed to work, and don't have the faintest shred of hard evidence for its efficacy (because no one has that, probably because it doesn't work). None of them, if walked through what skeptical scrutiny is would be able to say that they had exercised it. We need something to winnow the wheat from the chaff. Biodynamics is clearly the chaff.

It would be irresponsible of me to practice homeopathic medicine, taking such a course. Not to far off from this point, practicing homeopathic "medicine" is an inherently highly irresponsible act. If you want a degree yourself you can get one here it really is that easy.

I think the Machismo really is a story for another thread.
 
Joel Hollingsworth
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What about the efficacy of placebo, though?

Seriously. For ailments like depression or allergies or pain, can't the placebo response be an important factor in treatment?

I've read that the placebo response has actually gotten stronger in recent decades, while the total response to most drugs (i.e., placebo response plus drug response) tends to get weaker over time. Drugs like fluoxetine were significantly different from placebo when approved, but now seem not to be.

A Wired article about this.

I'm not entirely comfortable with the power structures surrounding either fluoxetine or homeopathy, but they do reveal an important aspect of medicine.
 
Emerson White
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Joel Hollingsworth wrote:
What about the efficacy of placebo, though?

Seriously. For ailments like depression or allergies or pain, can't the placebo response be an important factor in treatment?

I've read that the placebo response has actually gotten stronger in recent decades, while the total response to most drugs (i.e., placebo response plus drug response) tends to get weaker over time. Drugs like fluoxetine were significantly different from placebo when approved, but now seem not to be.

A Wired article about this.

I'm not entirely comfortable with the power structures surrounding either fluoxetine or homeopathy, but they do reveal an important aspect of medicine.


The placebo effect is both interesting and important, and deserves a lot of study. They deserve legitimate study though, Homeopathy is inherently sloppy and dishonest, that doesn't produce information with any kind of useful predictive power, it just wastes time and resources that could be spent on more productive avenues. Sure some drugs turn out to not be as effective as once thought, but we get to remove them after we figure that out. Homeopathy has been failing for more than 100 years, yet we still have it.

The Placebo effect only lasts about two weeks, a month if you are lucky, so an unwell and unhappy person gets put on a rollercoaster that drains there energy and their wallets, its like narcotics when you step back and look at it.
 
Dale Hodgins
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Emerson White wrote:Nothing can be inoculated at homeopathic levels, so biodynamics are unlikely to be innoculating anything.


This is the point where things took a strange turn with this old thread. From here on, Emerson did his best to explain how he came to this conclusion. Everything he said makes perfect sense to me.

The original talk of beneficial bacteria was left in the dust.
 
Rhys Firth
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And dragging up an old thread from 2010... Endophytes are old news over here, the seed companies have marketed grasses based on the endophyte varieties in those grasses for years. The majority of the research on endophytes is pest resistance, AR1 provides resistance to several insects but less to others and was one of the early cultivated endophytes, others like AR37 provide increased insect pest resistance to a wider spectrum of insects, ENDO5 provides similar resistance to AR1 but without toxicology which produces ryegrass staggers at certain seasons and heavy intake.



B T W, Endophytes are fungal, not bacterial.
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://stoves2.com
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