Are you starting your own organic garden for the first time? If so, you probably don’t even know where to start. It’s no secret that growing your own organic plants for the first time can be a bit overwhelming. Below are some tips that can help to make growing your own organic garden a bit smoother.
Be sure to test your soil before you plant your garden, if you want to be successful without the need for chemicals. A home testing kit can tell you the pH of your soil, which indicates the likelihood of plant survival. A vegetable garden requires a pH of about 6.5; if your soil is off, you can supplement before your plants start to die.
When starting your organic garden, a great tip is to figure out which vegetables you should pick to plant in your garden. Some vegetables are better suited for home germination than others are. Some great vegetables to consider planting include broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, lettuce, peppers, onions, tomatoes, basil, and more.
Try not to walk in your garden unless you absolutely have to in order to care for it. Work from a distance when you can. Walking across the soil compacts it, which makes it harder for roots to penetrate to needed nutrients. If your soil is already packed down, gently aerate it without damaging root structure.
Choose carefully the plants you want to grow. Some plants are simply not made to grow indoors. If you want to grow vegetables, you can easily grow broccoli or Brussels sprouts indoors. Alyssums and zinnias are great flowers to grow indoors. You can also experiment with other kinds of plants, but keep in mind that it might not work.
Make sure your seeds have enough room to grow. It is fine to have many seeds in one container before they sprout, but you will have to replant them as they grow. Use containers that are actually big enough for one plant, and avoid having more than one plant in each container.
Manage your garden hose to prevent frustration. Garden hoses, especially longer or heavy duty ones, can become unwieldy and annoying when you have to drag them around the garden, all twisted up. Invest in a portable hose reel or a stationary one, depending on your garden configuration, to more easily manage your garden hose and make storing it fast and easy.
Plant ornamental, edible plants as part of your regular yard landscaping. Good plants to start with include rosemary, thyme varieties, sages, oregano and basil. These all look great mixed with perennials, and they will supply you with enough that you won’t need to purchase them anymore – herbs are expensive at the supermarket.
Integrate low-growing strawberries into your yard’s landscape. Instead of setting aside fruit plants in a separate area, choose strawberries, such as alpine varieties, to use a ground cover that doubles as a fruit garden. These spreading, low-growing plants look attractive and grow well in areas that have a lot of sun.
If you don’t have a big yard, or any yard at all, you can still grow great organic produce in containers. Most vegetables, other than some root vegetables, grow just as well in pots as they do in the ground. There are also many varieties which have been bred to do well in containers.
Go on and plant more trees. Trees are some of the best choices of things to grow in your landscape. They provide shade, moisture retention, and food for your compost every fall. Trees also add a great deal to your property values, more than any other plant you can put in your yard.
Use equal parts of green and dried plant material in your compost pile. You can use all types of green material in your compost pile, including cut grass, dead flowers, fruit peels and cores, and much more. Dried material includes straw, shredded paper, and cardboard. Your compost pile should never contain meat, ashes or charcoal.
If you are beginning an organic garden, you should make sure that you re-pot your seedlings into larger containers with a compost mix as soon as your seedlings begin crowding each other in their original containers. If you do not do this, your seeds will eventually suffocate themselves and die.
Water your plants appropriately for the climate. The level of necessary watering turns on the type of water you use, the kind of soil in your garden and the amount of direct sunlight you have. In a warm and humid climate you should avoid watering the plant itself. Wet leaves promote the growth of leaf fungi. Make sure that your root system is well-watered.
As you have seen, growing an organic garden is not as scary as it may appear at first. Just think of all of the benefits it has and all of the expenses it can take care of, along with all of the money it can save you in the long run growing your own “green” food.