Are you concerned about what goes into the food you eat? Do you dream or wish you could grow organic. Gardening without pesticides and herbicides, and making your own organic garden soil is actually easier than most people think.
Well if you answered yes to the opening question, than organic gardening may be just for you , but first you must understand just what organic gardening is. It is not adding commercial fertilizers, or spraying chemicals to control pests. It is not using treated seed, and it is not soaking the fresh produce in a solution to preserve it.
WHAT IS ORGANIC GARDENING ?
It is using natural methods of pest control, soil amendment and ensuring it is a healthy crop without using chemicals so it doesn’t require artificial preservatives to keep it fresh. Let’s face it – produce only lasts so long, so why not enjoy it in its fresh stage as soon as possible after harvesting. If it needs to be preserved, then do so by freezing or canning. Fresh is always the best, but when there is an abundance freezing is the next best thing.
To begin your organic gardening practices, one of the first things you need is a compost bin that will assist you in making your very own organic garden soil. By turning grass clippings, leaves and kitchen scraps (vegetable matter only) into friable soil you will have a good foundation to start your organic garden. Weather you are looking for step by step instructions on making your own compost bin or to purchase one that is already made , can be found at either of these links.
By replacing commercial fertilizers with home-grown compost, you will be reducing the amount of chemicals and synthetic matter that goes into your body. That alone is a good way to ensure you and your family are eating as healthy as possible. Have you ever heard the saying “you are what you eat”? Would you rather be a walking chemical storage bank, or an all-natural totem?
HOW TO GROW ORGANIC
Organic gardening practices not only help to reduce the amount of toxins that go into your body, but also the impact on the environment as a whole. By making your own compost, organic garden soil and saving your own seeds, you will be reducing the amount of trash that goes into your local landfill. When you’re not buying commercial fertilizers and pesticides, you are not contributing to the plastic jugs that end up at your local waste management facility.
If you want to grow organic than saving seeds is a fun way to plan your crops for years in advance. Depending on your seed-saving skills, you may find your tomatoes have reverted back to the heirloom varieties. It does take some trial-and-error to figure out which seeds will be viable for years to come, but that is all part of the organic gardening experience.
If you are just starting out, purchase heirloom varieties that have not been treated. Many seeds on the market today are hybrids, so if you save some seed you may not get exactly what you expected in your next crop. That is not to say your corn will come up as a pumpkin, but it may not be the same colour as the original seed.
Organic gardening also includes companion-planting. What this means is by planting certain vegetables, fruit or even flowers next to one another, you will eliminate major pest problems. Don’t forget to encourage the bees to visit your garden to ensure pollination. Encouraging bats to make their home in your garden will reduce the number of mosquitoes you have to contend with as well. Inviting the natural predators in will help keep the chemicals out. It’s fun to sit by the fire and watch the bats fly around, because you know they are scooping up as many mosquitoes as they can. Bats are much easier on your lungs than the foggers or mosquito coils.
Taking the extra time required to pull the weeds that pop up is good exercise, as is doing your daily walk-around. Getting to know your garden and spotting problem areas early is your best defense against disease or insect infestation.
In a world of convenience and instant everything, be rest assured that taking the time to learn about gardening organically will benefit you and your family for generations to come. By composting you are using your kitchen waste to become something new. By saving seeds you are reducing the amount of resources it takes to get the seed packages from the nursery to your doorstep. By companion planting you are reducing or eliminating the chemicals used for pest control. By going out and physically checking your garden you are getting exercise. And last but not least, you are creating a healthier lifestyle for you and your family.
Now go ahead and give organic gardening a try. Grow organic , make your own organic garden soil and you will find it really isn’t that much more work than maintaining a garden that is filled with sprays and other chemicals. Your body will thank you for it, as will your family when you fill their plates with fresh, natural tasting produce. You don’t need a huge yard to be an organic gardener, start off in a 5 gl bucket to give it a try. If your wondering just how to have a garden in small spaces than this article is perfect.
Happy Growing !