Contrary to popular belief, growing an organic garden doesn’t mean you’re one step away from joining a commune or living off the land. It just means you want healthier food, bereft of the harsh chemicals that are used by mass-producing farms. Here are some tips to ensure that your garden will always grow.
If you don’t have the space to have an actual garden in the ground, it’s perfectly acceptable to have an organic garden in containers. There are only a few root vegetables like asparagus that won’t grow well in containers, so feel free to explore. Containers are perfect to grow organic tomatoes, green beans, green onions and many other organic vegetables.
Make gardening efficient. Don’t waste your time by searching high and low for that packet of seeds or spade. Before you start work in the garden, make sure you have the necessary tools, and always remember to put them away when you are finished. Invest in a tool belt or wear pants that have lots of pockets.
It never hurts to keep a few bags around the house to protect your floors from dirty gardening shoes. This allows you to work steadily and without distractions, making you a happier and more productive gardener.
Blend flowering fruit shrubs into your regular landscape. Don’t have a separate area to turn into a garden? Elderberries, blueberries and currants have pretty flowers in springtime and look great in the fall as well. The side benefit of these landscape-enhancing plants is all the fruit they produce for you to enjoy.
Take steps to protect earthworms in your organic garden. Till your soil minimally, as tilling can kill earthworms. The best tilling depth is 3 to 5 inches. Avoid using chemical fertilizers because they harm the micro-organisms in the soil, decreasing earthworm activity. Be sure that the soil never dries out too much, but at the same time avoid over-watering. By maintaining these soil conditions, you will notice your earthworm population increasing rapidly!
When beginning your own organic garden, you should always make sure you moisten your mix that is in the containers before you sow the seeds. If your mix is not moist, it will dry out. This could cause your plant to die before it is given a chance to grow.
Plant synergistically. To naturally repel pests, plant marigolds near nematode-sensitive crops like tomatoes and potatoes. To improve growth, plant legumes near plants that can benefit from the nitrogen they produce. Intersperse pungent plants like herbs and onions, whose scent can repel bugs and animals, with other unscented vegetables.
The best and most natural way to fertilize an organic garden is with compost. Compost can be made from anything that was once alive. Don’t discount the value of your kitchen waste, leaves, grass clippings or anything else that was once alive. By composting it all, you will give invaluable life to your organic garden.
Yes, there is a stigma that comes with the word “organic,” but that’s because most people fail to realize that the word organic, basically means natural. In fact, growing organic is as natural as you can possibly get. So make sure to use these gardening tips when you’re ready to grow organic food.