How to Start a Garden: Best Organic Gardening Advice for the Beginner Gardener
If you want to grow your own food, the best way to go is organic gardening. Gardening organically is healthier. Growing food without harmful pesticides or chemical fertilizers is healthier for your family. It is better for the environment. It may take a little more planning and a little more work, but it is worth it. And it is not as hard as you may think. Easy to learn techniques such as mulching, crop rotation and composting can help you to grow the vegetable garden of your dreams.
Feed the Soil, Not the Plant
A compost pile is essential to feed your organic garden. It is really easy to do. You can just start a compost pile in a shady corner of your yard. Heap up your yard waste and your kitchen waste. Keep it moist. Turn it over every so often. In a few months, you will be rewarded with crumbly black compost, the perfect garden amendment. It is nutrient rich and may be all you need to feed your plants.
Composting may provide all of the nutrition your plants need to grow big and strong. Some plants, like tomatoes, are heavy feeders and may need a boost during their growing season. You can buy organic fertilizers such as bonemeal, bloodmeal, liquid seaweed or fish emulsion to help your vegetable plants.
Organic gardening with compost will improve your soil. Your plants will be stronger and more disease resistant. The good bacteria in your dirt will flourish. This will stave off the more harmful bacteria.
Good soil also encourages worms.They love fertile soil with lots of organic material. Worms are a good indicator of whether you have good soil or not. If you have worms, you have good soil. Their worm castings also further nourishes your garden.
Mulch, Mulch, Mulch
Many organic gardeners find mulch useful in their garden. Mulch is a layer of material you can lay around your garden plants. It has a few uses. Covering the dirt with mulch will keep most of the weeds from sprouting. It will conserve water and control root temperature. An organic mulch will also add nutrients to your soil. Some examples of organic mulch are: hay, leaves, shredded bark, grass cuttings, or peat moss.
Layer your mulch a few inches thick. Leave about one inch around your plant stem free so that water will get to the plant`s roots.
Get Out of Your Garden Rut- Crop Rotation
Organic gardeners know it is best to mix up your garden plan from year to year.Different plants place different demands on your soil. Some plants are heavy feeders, some are light. Crop rotation will keep your soil nutrients balanced throughout your garden.
You may also prevent pest attacks or diseases in your garden. Certain pest are attracted to certain vegetables. If they find one they like, they may set up camp and come back even stronger the next year. Confuse the bugs by moving your plants to different places every year.
Keep Your Garden Healthy
- Avoid weeding when your plants are wet. You may spread disease spores from plant to plant.
- Choose disease resistant seeds.
- Keep your garden neat and tidy. Don`t let weeds get out of hand.