When the winter chill is out of the air and spring starts to settle in, a lot of people out there break out their shovels and plows and decide to plant a garden. If you want to plant a garden this year, why not make it an organic garden? Here are some fantastic tips you can use to make sure that your garden grows.
If you are a fan of organic, sustainable gardening methods, consider leaving part of your backyard untouched so that natural plants and wildlife can flourish in the area. Wildlife can help the plants in your garden to thrive, as insects support plant reproduction, while the excrement of many species contains nutrients which can help to fertilize your soil.
A great rule of thumb to follow when planting an organic garden is less is more. While you’ll want to plant a little more than you think you will need in case of rot or pests, you don’t want to overdo it because you’ll end up with much more than you can handle.
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.
Fertilize your soil with organic compost. Organic gardeners tend to fertilize their soil twice in one season: once prior to planting, and then again in the middle of a growth cycle. The best fertilizer to use is an organic compost, as it releases nutrients slowly unlike chemical fertilizers, which release nutrients in one go and then lose their effect.
A great tip when running your own organic garden is to make sure you immediately fertilize your seedlings when they receive their first true leaves, which will appear as soon as the cotyledon disappears. If your seedlings are not immediately fertilized, they will die unless you are using a mix with no soil that also does not have compost.
A great tip when running your own organic garden, is to lightly ruffle your seedlings with your hand or cardboard, around once or twice per day. This sounds like total nonsense, but there is research suggesting that it does promote plant growth relative to unpetted plants.
If you have a problem with aphids, consider using ladybugs. Ladybugs are natural predators to aphids, and they are very effective in keeping the aphid population under control. You can buy them in bulk from a garden center or online. This is a much better solution than spraying your plants with pesticides.
Treat your roses! To naturally remedy black spots on roses in your organic garden, use milk! For some unknown reason – using a 1:2 ratio mixture of milk and water – has been shown to get rid of black spots! Use a spray bottle to apply the mixture directly to the leaves of the affected plant.
Use rainwater for your organic garden. Water can be collected in barrels when rain fall is at high levels, and then used on your garden during drought periods. This will help to conserve water and provide your plants with all the hydration they need. Most rain barrels have a spicket so you can attach your soaker hose directly to the barrel.
One of the best things about a garden is that once you put in the initial labor, you can sit back and enjoy the fruits – or vegetables – of this labor as your garden begins to grow. Make sure that you’re using these tips correctly if you want to experience the best possible results with your organic garden.