Our plant doctor, Radko Tichavsky, answers your questions about houseplants and crops for May 2016. Send your questions toPlease include your approximate location and climate.
Our plant doctors: Radko Tichavshy, Mark Moodie and Pawan Singhania
Radko Tichavsky is a Czech born Mexican Agrohomeopath. He is a co-founder and director of Instituto Comenius in Mexico and author of Handbook of Agrohomeopathy, 2007 (Spanish) and Homeopathy for Plants, 2009 (Spanish) and creator and teacher of Holohomeopathy.
Mark Moodie hosts the website Considera which provides a growing M.M and Repertory for plants and discusses resources for biodynamics and Agrohomeopathy The website allows the world community to contribute their experiences in planting.
Radko Tichavskyi is now offering a one semester virtual course in Agrohomeopathy (in English). You can learn how to define and analyze holons and how to repertorize the specific homeopathic treatment beyond just disease or pest names. You can find out more here:
Quote of the Day
What do you need to be a good agrohomeopath?
Maybe it will sound to some as too philosophical or poetic, but unconditional love for all living beings, even organisms apparently very pathogenic, that express resonance with life and seek to transcend and finally will evolve in harmony with the holon. – Radko Tichavsky
Greetings Mr. Tichavsky,
The last year couple years our strawberry crop was attacked by gray mold (Botrytis cinerea). We’re determined not to use chemicals, so is there a natural way to deal with this problem? We live in Vineland New Jersey (zipcode 08360) in the U.S. The weather is mild and there’s been a lot of rainfall.
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Strawberry is a crop that in its evolution always coexisted with trees such as Pinus spp., Quercus spp., Acacia spp., and learned to exchange secondary metabolites with them to complement their defenses against different pathogens. By separating strawberries from its forest habitat, which often appears on the edge of the forest, and hybridizing the plant to produce larger and sweeter fruits, health problems of the plant are more frequent.
Strawberry contains 17 antifungal metabolites, including quercetin, kaempferol, citral, linalool, catechin, p-coumarinic acid, vanillic acid, phylloquinone and others, but once separated from its forest environment (holon) it becomes vulnerable to fungi such as as Botrytis spp.
Homeopathic remedies useful for various symptomatology are Allium sativum and Achillea millenrama 6 CH, Aconitum napellus 6 CH, Acacia farnesiana 6 CH and Silicea terra 6 CH of course. We also use successfully a really powerful homeopathic preparation made from “oak apple”, a kind of tumor caused by flies of Cynipidae family present in the leaves of Quercus sp.
These are collected once their color changes from green to coffee. An alcohol mother tincture is prepared and then a homeopathic preparation to 12 CH potency is done with a little of resin of Huisache (Acacia farnesiana) as coadjuvant and is sprayed on plants, especially in wet periods where the strawberry is likely to become infected. It is important to cut the infected fruits and compost it apart to avoid re-infection through spores.
Our apple and cherry trees have been attacked by apple maggots (Rhagoletis pomonella) . The larvae dig through the fruit and destroy it. They arrive in late spring and lay eggs under the apple skin. The eggs hatch, and the larvae did into the fruit. We are in Dothan, Alabama, in the Southern U.S. (Zip code 36301) Hot summers and cold winters. Moderate rainfall. Do you have any suggestions?
Rhagoletis pomonella is a plague that if left unfixed can destroy up to 100% of the fruit crop. But thanks to the wisdom of the holon, Rhagoletis sp. also presents many parasitoids that can control it completely. Parasitoid families I can mention are: Diachasmimorpha, Braconidae, Utetes, Hemipenthes, Bombyliidae and others. In this case we have to inform the holon about the problem through the nosode 6 CH prepared from the same pest, sprinkled foliar and at the soil. It can also be useful to spray Ruta graveolens 12 CH during oviposition period in the spring along with baba nopal (Opuntia ficus-indica) or Aloe vera gel as coadjuvant. In the rest of the productive period of the trees I recommend to apply Melia azedarach 12 CH on the soil. With a little patience you can break the reproductive cycle of the pest and balance the relationships in your holon.
Dear Radko Tichavsky,
I have two questions. My plum tomatoes are showing blossom end rot in addition to yellowing and curled leaves on all tomatoes. I added a dozen crushed egg shells when planting and am only using organic gardening methods, such as compost and leaf mulch, but we have had intermittent dry and rainy spells. I know the plums in particular are susceptible to the rot. What can I use and how should I apply it? I live on the East coast of the U.S. and it has been hot and rainy lately.
My second question is about pepper plants. They have brown spots with holes in the leaves. It started with a bell pepper and seemed to spread to the adjacent plant in the same bed just today. In addition to the leaves dropping, I am now losing buds. I have attached some photos. I noticed leaves that had been partly eaten, and I have seen a couple yellow and black beetle type insects, but didn’t know if they are to blame. I am removing the diseased leaves, but pretty soon there will be none left on the bell pepper plant.
Pepper Plants Beetle type insect
Dear Judy, Plants can take advantage of eggshells, but it always must be accompanied with a powerful biotic activity in the soil, which is difficult to get during periods of intermittent drought. In this case you have to dissolve the shells in apple vinegar and apply this liquid as microdosis (simple dilution of 1:40) in irrigation. Also a very useful homeopathic remedy is slime of Opuntia ficus-indica applied at 6 CH potency. It should be applied in a foliar way and also on the soil, in order to form kind of semi-permeable nano-bags that have the ability to retain water in the soil even during periods of prolonged drought. An application is made every two weeks.
Regarding the control of rot in tomato, especially useful are the fungal remedies (simila similibus curantur) Ganoderma applanatum, Ganoderma lucidum, Lentinus edodes or Schyzophyllum commune in low potency 6 CH. Make a short walk in your holon, looking at the fallen state of rotting logs and you will find the exact item belonging to your holon fungus, useful to control pathogens in tomato.
The insect in the image is Diabrotica sp. a voracious pest capable of destroying wide parts of the crop in one night. Nosode of insect at 30 CH potency is used to control him, and in case of an attack in progress, use Melia azedarach 6 CH, or Schinus molle 6 CH, or Larrea tridentata 12 CH.
Dear Radko Tichavsky,
Can you give me an overview of agrohomeopathy? What does it take to practice good agrohomeopathy?
Dear Dr. Kapil,
Agrohomeopathy is a discipline of experimentation, although it has been written relatively much about it, much of the literature is built by anthropocentric or speculative deductions. A part is represented by laboratory experiments, replicable only in the laboratory, but of little use in agricultural praxis. Actually the other part is discovered by the direct experiences of farmers, very useful but often with lack of order in the repertorizations and applications. So, the first task of an agrohomeopath is turn to experimentation and testing, first on a small scale, then grow to medium and large scale and select from the vast amount of information, the reliable data.
The second task is to understand that agrohomeopathy has many common but also many divergent points with human homeopathy as “human homeopathy” treats a single species: humans. In agrohomeopathy we cure a set of organisms in a symbiotic-antagonistic relationship grouped in a holon. So the patient is not a single individual or a group of individuals of the same species, but many species linked and grouped in a dynamic balance (in case of health ) or dynamic imbalance (in case of illness). This marks a notable difference with “human homeopathy”.
The third condition for the work of an agrohomeopath to be successful, is to know a little about the physiology of plants and organisms, “pathogens” and “non pathogens” and about their deployment of secondary metabolites, and their metabolic pathways. Understanding their appearance in the holon, is not like a simple pest or disease to be fought, but has to be understand as a symptom of imbalance expressed by the holon.
The fourth condition is not to underestimate the intelligence of the holon and to distinguish and listen to signals in the holon and its parts. They are living like each other and often their life performace shows greater wisdom than ours. I confirm it often and I express it with all humility.
The fifth condition to be successful in agrohomeopathy is to understand that not all human polychrests are equal to agricultural polychrests and vice versa. The Agrohomeopathy materia medica is still being built.
The sixth condition is to learn new laboratory agrohomeopathic techniques, including dynamisations different from Hahnemanian’s decimal or centesimal ones. For example, use of live nosodes or Tichavsky-Jenichen dynamizations.
The seventh very important condition is to learn to prepare, potentize and apply homeopathy in large quantities in crops.
The eighth condition is learning to use adjuvants. This intensifies the action of homeopathy in plants, because weather conditions (UV) can rapidly decompose (neutralize) homeopathic remedies.
The ninth condition is to understand that the agrohomeopath is not just a mere observer, but is part of the holon and its vital progress takes place in conjunction with the holon.
The tenth condition to summarize agrohomeopathy and holohomeopathy, and maybe it will sound to some as too philosophical or poetic, is unconditional love for all living beings, even organisms apparently very pathogenic, that express resonance with life and seek to transcend and finally will evolve in harmony with the holon.
Dear sir ,
Could you advise me about homeopathic medicines to increase fruit quantity and size in a tree? Which remedy increases leaf quantity in plants? Which medicine increases growth rate rapidly in plants. Which medicine increases respiration in plants?
Dr. Sharad Tripathi
Dear Dr. Tripathi,
Repertorization in humans and in plants, differs. In humans we repertorize one single species (Homo sapiens) and in holohomeopathy/ agrohomeopathy we repertorize hundreds of species used in agriculture, all of them with different metabolic pathways and secondary metabolites. There is some overlap, for example in many plants Calcarea carbonica promotes root growth and accumulation of water in the tissues, Bryonia promotes respiratory processes, gibberellic acid causes elongation of cells, sprouting seeds and growth of new shoots, but these are actually coincidence and are not valid for all plants.
The metabolism of plants and their performance is linked to the surrounding environment and their habitants and to the great quantity of endogenous organisms (bacteria, fungi, phytoplasms, viruses etc.) and they all exchange metabolites routinely with the plants. That is, there are no universal homeopathic remedies for all plant; even human polychrests as Sulphur or Silicea cannot be valid for absolutely all plants.
On the other hand, agrohomeopathic polychrests are specific to a plant genus or a botanical family, depending on its metabolites and environmental conditions. For example, Cina accelerates the germination of corn, but does not have the same effect automatically in other taxonomic families. Acidum nitricum has a different performance in some plants depending on the temperature etc. Many vegetables polychrests are unknown or little used in human homeopathy, for example wood-rotting fungi as Schyzophyllum communis or Hexagonia hydnoides.
The answer to your questions is extremely complex if we want to be responsible: Holohomeopathy or agrohomeopathy seeks not for the increase in fruit size as the only evaluation factor. That approach would be so similar to chemical agriculture that produces large fruits, but with no nutrients, clean fruit but poisoned, in large quantity but at the cost of lives of many live organisms. It also results in environmental destruction and loss of biodiversity and ends in extinction. An increase of 25% of production in agrohomeopathy is significant if further you can note better biochemical and mineral content of fruits, increased biodiversity, increased resilience of plants and of the holon, and there is minimal presence of pests and diseases.
Best regards Radko Tichavsky