Tuesday, March 26, 2013

How to Start an Organic Garden

Starting an organic garden is a great way to avoid the pesticides, genetic modification, and bio-engineering that comes with buying produce that is mass produced and sold at many supermarkets. Organic farming can keep you and your family safe. By following these simple tips, you can grow you own organic garden.

Start composting to create a great fertilizer. Composting is the process by which organic materials are broken down to fertilize soil. To compost your kitchen scraps, break up pieces of fruit peels, potato skins, coffee grounds, newspapers, and other biodegradable materials, and place them in a composter or compost bin. Then, disperse the compose over the soil by placing handfuls of compost around plants, or turning under the existing stalks and roots with a pitchfork and pouring in the compost at the end of the harvesting season.

Consider the climate you live in to decide what you should grow. Some plants require warmer climates. Others require more shade or a different amount of humidity. Consult with other gardeners in your area about which vegetables grow best where you live.

Collect rainwater instead of using your outdoor hose to water your garden. Rain collectors, which look like giant vases with a spigot at the bottom, are great for watering your garden at no cost to you days after it has rained.

Reduce the amount of weeds in your garden by using mulch. Mulch prevents weeds from getting their roots in your garden's soil and growing, where they can suffocate your plants and cause them to compete for resources like sunlight and water.

Use lady bugs, frogs, and lizards to help remove pests. These creatures are all natural enemies of many of the parasitic insects that can devastate a garden. You can catch these animals wildly, or buy them from pet stores. Be sure to find animals that are native to where you live; otherwise, they may die.

Be sure to remove sick plants in their entirety to prevent them from killing other plants. Pull out the roots and dispose of them separately from your compost bin. Burning them may be effective if you have a small fire pot or smoker.

Be sure to put a fence around your garden to keep pets, pests, and wildlife from getting into your garden. On this fence, you can put CDs or bells to deter birds from eating your seeds. Additionally, you can put mesh over the top of your garden if other animals cause problems for you.

When washing your vegetables, soak them in a diluted vinegar mix to remove dirt, grime, and bacteria. This also helps your fruits and vegetables remain fresh longer, meaning you can pick more vegetables as they are ripe and chill them so they are still ripe when you want to eat them.

Organic gardening can be very rewarding. In addition to providing nutritious, safe produce for your family, you also get the benefits of having raised plants for yourself. By following these simple tips, you can have your own organic garden at a low cost.

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