Starting an Organic garden doesn’t have to be intimidating. Nowadays with the current awareness of the importance of organic gardening, many supplies are readily available at your local garden center. Here are six simple tips!
1. Most importantly start with good organic soil
Soil is the foundation of a great garden. “Feed the soil and let the soil feed the plant”. In the long run, starting a garden with beautiful organic soil will save you time and money. Not only will it produce lusher, healthier plants but it also reduces potential problems with pests and diseases. There are many places you can start your garden; raised garden beds, container gardens or fortify an already existing garden bed. If using a raised garden bed or container garden, simply purchase organic potting soil from your local nursery. If you are using an existing bed fortify it with compost which you can purchase. I strongly recommend starting your own compost pile though, it is like gardeners gold! Check out our article on “Easy Composting” for more information.
2. Find a beautiful sunny location
Nourish your plants at least six to eight hours a day with sunlight. Leafy greens like spinach and lettuce can do with a bit less.
3. Proper drainage is essential
Good drainage enhances the quality of your garden and is crucial for healthy plant growth. Poor drainage is one of the leading causes of failure and frustration for many gardeners.
4. Buy healthy plants
You should buy young plants that will grow quickly after you plant them. Don’t choose plants that have become too crowded and straggly they have been in the small starter pots too long. You want compact plants with good leaf color.
5. Proper watering
The best time of the day to water is very early in the morning, by doing this you avoid fungal diseases that come when plants sit wet over night. Watering in the morning gives the water time to sit into the ground before the heat of the day comes along and evaporates the water. Whether you use a hose or watering can be sure you water just the bed and not the foliage. Keeping the foliage dry helps prevent diseases. One of the most important things that you can do for your plants is keeping them watered. You do not want them to begin to wilt at the same time be careful not to over water!
6. Organic pest control
This is where our local garden center has made Organic Gardening easier for us. There are many solutions you can use sparingly that are not harmful to your plants, yourself or the environment. Hopefully, starting with good soil, a sunny location, proper drainage, healthy plants and proper watering, you will not need the use of these products. In addition try combining your crops with companion plants and herbs which can act as natural pest deterrents. Marigolds are pest free and many people add them into their vegetable gardens to deter insects, they also add a flash of color. Marigolds and herbs will also attract beneficial insects.
Enjoy! It is a thrill to search for and pick your first sweet peas or taste a fresh picked organic garden tomato.