Subtle Agroecologies: farming with the Hidden Half of Nature


This book examines the principles and practices of farming and food systems from the perspective that half of life is not visible to us. Everything that we know (and do not know) about the physical world has an invisible, subtle counterpart that has been scarcely considered in the farming practices or research of modernist cultures. Subtle Agroecologies is not a farming system in itself, but superimposes a non-material dimension upon existing, materially based agroecological farming systems.

It is the third recent book sharing a quantum physics view on living matter, after Hugh Lovel’s ‘Quantum Agriculture’ in 2015 and Henk Kieft’s ‘Quantum leaps in Agriculture; Exploring quantum principles in farming, gardening and nature’ in 2019.

By visible, we are talking about that which is physical and material, things that can be observed and measured. Seeing the world chiefly as matter, and also as operating according to mechanical laws, is characteristic of the Newtonian – Cartesian philosophical paradigm of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Europe. Yet even during this period, philosophers and scientists were continuing to hold, explore and debate a range of other theories and beliefs of a non-material nature. Newton himself, for example, held deep theological interests covering alchemy, spirituality and lost Biblical works (Chambers, 2018).

So what do we mean by invisible or non-material? It is that which we cannot see or initially perceive with our five basic senses, a dimension that may be described in secular terms as involving vibrational energy, consciousness, ether, sentience/intelligence and/or electromagnetic or sound waves/frequencies. Research advances continue to open up a broader and deeper understanding of this dimension, including through the disciplines of quantum mechanics, consciousness and phenomenological studies, bioelectromagnetics, chronobiology, sonochemistry, neuroscience and transpersonal psychology.

The book deals with quantumbiology and protein music. It treats a series of electromagnetic parameters in plants and in astronomical rhytms, in treatment techniques as radionics and homeopathy. Issues of Life Energy and vitality become measurable with biophotons and crystallisation techniques. The dynamising role of water in farming is discussed. And last but not least it reflects on consciousness and describes methodes of Bodily Observation, Nature Constellations, Land Whispering, and Nature spirits. It touches upon the Metafysics of Nature.

The book’s content is organised into four clusters or sections. The first section is dedicated to providing a range of philosophical and theoretical perspectives as a ‘way in’ to this subject. The second section demonstrates existing, pioneering, commercial, largely wave-based applications in agriculture. The third explores innovative and appropriate methodologies for researching and working with the hidden half of nature, whilst the fourth and final section is dedicated to the non-academic voices of practitioners who are working directly in agriculture and associated fields.

Dr. Julia Wright from Coventry University’s ‘Centre for Agroecology, Resilience and Water’ did a great job in bringing this beautiful list of authors together and in the editing, assisted by Nicolas Parrott. The book is published by Tailor&Francis <>

The book is Open Access, thanks to Patrick McManaway. The book, or chapters of it can be downloaded for free from

Henk Kieft

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