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.
If you are planting vegetables, choose varieties that don’t require processing in order to keep. For example, sweet potatoes and onions will keep for months as long as they are kept cool and dry, without any additional work on your part. This reduces the amount of time you have to spend after harvesting.
To protect your crops from being ravaged by pests such as deer and other nuisance animals, be sure to fence your garden securely. A good fence will also keep other people from trampling your crops, or worse, stealing them. If you have burrowing pests like gophers, you may want to use raised beds for your vegetables.
Do not allow the garden to go without water. Many people have unrealistic expectations of watering the garden after work everyday, but life gets in the way and that is the end of the garden. Install a sprinkler system to ensure the garden gets enough water. Although this does add expense to the garden, the convenience of it is well worth the money.
Are you ready to plant a garden? Swap seeds with other people you know, or join a seed exchange with others online. It is not uncommon to need only a small number of seeds from each of your seed packets for each growing season. Trading will help you gain a greater variety of seeds not found in your stores. It will also save you from spending even more money just to get a greater variety of seeds!
Salt deposits can form unsightly marks on your clay pots. To easily remove the deposits mix water, rubbing alcohol and white vinegar in equal parts and spray onto the pots. Scrub with a plastic pad or brush and allow the pot to dry completely. Once the pot is dry, you are ready to plant.
Did you know that cute lady bugs are beneficial to plants because they kill harmful aphids? Lady beetles, also known as ladybugs, eat large numbers of aphids throughout its life. One beetle can eat 5,000 aphids! You can purchase ladybugs at a garden center, or through online resources, if you don’t have any in your garden. Plants love ladybugs!
Use groundcover to fill in bare areas of soil. Groundcover plants are very effective for ‘tying’ larger plants together and keeping weeds to a minimum. The earth needs to be well-cultivated, weeded and well-fertilized before you plant anything. In order for the plant to become well established, water thoroughly during dry spells and remove any weeds that may pop up. Fast growing groundcover plants include creeping thyme, sedum, ajuga, golden oregano, heuchera, lamium and vinca.
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.