Located in the middle of an idyllic forest, at Organic Castle we grow medicinal herbs and vegetables on more than 1,800 square metres of usable land. At the foot of a castle in a small village with 5,600 inhabitants, food, ingredients for medicines and natural cosmetics are produced here. Strictly according to the principles of organic and ecological farming and without the use of CO2-producing equipment.
We started in the early summer of 2018 with a plot of land that has not been cultivated for more than 20 years. A wild undergrowth of trees, bushes, ivy and nettles has developed from the former meadow on a slope.
The first idea to remove this wild growth and to process it on the compost was discarded after only a few hours on the property. Why dispose of valuable plants that have thrived here for decades without chemical fertilization and any human influence? So the plan was born to make something very special out of this piece of nature – Organic Castle.
Organic farming has an origin
After more than 40 years of city life and a previous career in IT, the needs for crowded city centres, car traffic, business trips and meetings have been met. More than that, a strong longing for nature arose. This was fulfilled in the last years by countless walks with the dog passively – only as a consumer. With this property we can now also actively participate in nature. And at the same time contribute to sharing the products of this natural spot of the earth with the whole world.
Never having been vegetable lovers, nor beeing a person greeted by name in a perfumery or drugstore. The visits there were too rare and above all not for us. The awareness of healthy nutrition has developed in recent years and is growing continuously. Instead of eating in restaurants and cooking simple dishes to save time, healthy food is now on the plate. It is not only the origin that matters, but also the freshness of the ingredients and their nutrient content. A similar development applies to the area of care and medicine. Instead of enjoying coffee in the waiting room as a private patient and then swallowing expensive pills, we see that many diseases can be alleviated and possibly also avoided by a healthy diet and care. Creams and cleaning agents do not have to convince through television advertising and triple packaging, but through their effect and tolerance.
Inspired by the microgardens in France and North America
In France, the USA and Canada, there has been a movement for some years now in which people have consciously turned to organic farming. Gardens with lawns and flowers are sold to vegetable gardeners and the products are sold directly on the farm and at nearby markets. In a big city like Paris or Montreal, this is undoubtedly possible because the number of inhabitants with an interest in healthy products is high. In a city with just five and a half thousand inhabitants, however, the absolute number of interested customers is significantly lower and makes work in the main occupation unprofitable and thus impossible in the long term.
The desire to turn the property into such a microgarden on the one hand and the need for an income on the other led to many thoughts about the possibilities. No thought was good or bad right from the start. The ideas ranged from pure organic vegetable production to the combination with small animal breeding.
In the blog we regularly report about the developments on the property. This includes not only many photos, but also reports of successes and setbacks associated with the cultivation and use of the crops.