One of the benefits (if you can call it that) of chemically-enhanced produce is that it grows bigger, faster and cheaper than organic produce. But the risk factor involved is just too much for some people to live with, and thus they attempt to grow their own produce organically. If you fit this bill, check out these gardening tips.
You can gain time by renewing your beds with this method: slice under the turf and turn it over. Cover it with wood chips and wait a few weeks. You can then use this bed to plant your perennial plants. The ground you have turned over should be made richer by the turf that is under it.
Toads can be a gardener’s best friend because of all the troublesome bugs they eat. To attract toads to come visit your garden and stay awhile, keep the garden bedding moist and offer some places where they can safely hide from predators of their own. A useful trick many gardeners use is to place old, broken clay flower pots upside down in the garden to function as a comfy shelter for the hard-working toads.
Use mulch in your organic garden. Mulching helps retain moisture, and helps provide nutrients to your growing plants. You should try to use at least a three inch layer of mulch in all of your beds. It will also make your garden beds look as if they were professionally finished.
Tend to your garden a few steps at a time. A garden requires ongoing maintenance, and becomes a big time drain if you let things pile up until the weekend. Stop by the garden for a few minutes each day and deadhead some flowers while you’re waiting for dinner to cook or pull a few weeds while watching the kids play.
When first growing a garden, attempt to put as much effort into the first bed as possible. Land that hasn’t been used for a while needs an overhaul to begin changing into a viable spot for plants. Usually these regions either lack the right nutrients or consistency of soil. If you plan to make a garden out of patch, make sure that it has all the right pre-conditions to planting.
Collecting rainwater is the natural way to supply yourself with water for all your organic gardening needs. You can simply build your own system of rain barrels or buy them ready made. That way, you won’t have to pay for water for your garden or lawn maintenance. Caution is needed! Covers are suggested to cut down on mosquitoes and other pests that can be attracted to standing water.
If your organic garden uses containers, you may need to swap seedlings to larger containers as they outgrow them. When you do this, make sure to handle the seedlings by the leaves and roots. To be more specific, you should avoid touching the stems as they are extremely fragile and can be easily damaged. After you have swapped containers, it is recommended to water the roots as this will help them merge with their new environment.
When maintaining an organic garden, be sure to always wind up your hoses. Dragging and storing a hose that is not wound up can take a lot of time away from you. Try using stationary or portable hose reels to wind up your hoses and to save you some time.
When watering your garden, consider a soaker hose instead of using a hose or watering can. If you turn the soaker hoses pressure onto low, you can leave your water on for hours which will allow a part of your garden to be slowly irrigated. This can provide you with time to do other things.
An important tip for organic gardening that will naturally help prevent disease from appearing in your plants is to move your plants to different spots of your garden each year. This will keep any disease from spreading because the soil doesn’t build up harmful organisms from planting in the same spot each year.
To rid your organic garden of bugs, try using a mixture of dish soap and water. Mix 2 tablespoons of dish soap into a gallon of water. Use a spray bottle to spray the foliage and soil around the plants. Before spraying your whole garden or even a whole plant, test the effect of the mixture on a few leaves and wait a few days before doing the rest.
While most people think of large organic farms when they hear about organic gardening this is not always exactly how it works. If you are interested in becoming an organic farmer all you need is a small piece of land and some seeds of your own. If you plant it and take care of it, it is probably organic!
Grow basil successfully. Basil is an annual warm-season herb, very susceptible to cold and frost. Sow seed in spring at a depth of about 1/2 inch in full sun. Keep the soil evenly moist. When the basil reaches about 6 inches, pinch out the top to encourage bushy growth. Pick continuously before any flower buds open. Pick leaves in the morning after dew has dried, and don’t over wash leaves, as you will lose the aromatic oils.
Encourage earthworms in your soil. Earthworms make for healthy soil by eating the soil and thereby aerating it in the process. They also leave behind their castings, or vermicast, which is a great organic nutrient-rich fertilizer. The vermicast also retains water and nutrients better than soil without worms.
Rotate your crops to prevent permanent populations of pests in your garden. As with any ecosystem, pests need a certain amount of time to nest and build up a proper population within a garden. These pests are specially suited for one environment and one food source. By switching their food source you can essentially keep your pest population down simply because they are unable to adapt to the new type of plant.
Mass-produced food will always have its own advantages, but it may not be worth it to you or your family to risk your health for a few extra dollars in savings. If you decide to grow organically, however, you can save hundreds while ensuring that everything you eat is fresh and healthy. Just use these tips to help you grow.