The fact will emerge quickly enough in agriculture! The farming anthroposophist no doubt, if he is idealistic enough, can go over entirely to the anthrospophical way of working — say, between his twenty-ninth and his thirtieth year — even with the work on his farm. But will his fields do likewise? Will the whole Organisation of the farm do likewise? Will those who have to mediate between him and the consumer do likewise — and so on and so on? You cannot make them all anthroposophists at once — from your twenty-ninth to your thirtieth year. And when you begin to see that you cannot do so, it is then that you lose heart. That is the point, my dear friends — do not lose heart; know that it is not the momentary success that matters; it is the working on and on with iron perseverance. (Steiner 2007:30)
In this, then, I cannot agree with the Count. Whatever appreciation or gratitude you feel for the fact that this Agricultural Course has been achieved, I must ask you to direct your gratitude to him, remembering above all that if he had not thought and pondered with such iron strength, and sent his representative to Dornach, never relinquishing his purpose — then, considering the many things that have to be done from Dornach, it is scarcely likely that this Course in the farthest Eastern corner of the country could have been given. (Steiner 2007:31)
Forgive me, Count Keyserlingk, if I become a little local in my references at this moment. But I would say, if ever it should be necessary in a certain sense to rid the soil of iron, you would do well to plant stinging nettles where they will do no harm. For in a certain sense the nettle plants would liberate the uppermost layers of the soil from the iron influence, because they are so fond of it and draw it into themselves. Though this might not undermine the iron as such, it would certainly undermine the influences of the iron on plant-growth in general. Hence it would undoubtedly be of great benefit to grow stinging nettles in this district. However, I only mention that in passing, to show you how important the mere presence of the stinging nettle may be for the growth of plants in the whole area around. (Steiner 2007:46)
Answer: In this case the best thing will be to do it first in a mortar; and you will need an iron pestle. Grind it down in the mortar to a fine, mealy consistency. If it is quartz, having ground it down as far as possible in this way, you will even need to continue grinding it afterwards on a glass surface. It must be a very fine meal, and that is not easy to attain with quartz. (Steiner 2007:50)
STEINER, Rudolf. 2007. The Agriculture Course. (Trans.: George Adams) Shrewsbury: Wilding & Son Ltd.