Some of the best-tasting food you’ll ever eat can be grown in your own back yard. Think of the variety! A ripe, juicy watermelon or a fresh, crisp carrot, can add to your meal. Not to mention the money you can save growing your own, verses the grocery store. In addition, you can grow you produce naturally, without enhancers. Following are some tips to help you become an organic gardener:
To achieve the best growing results, plants need sufficient carbon dioxide. Plants tend to grow better when the CO2 levels are higher. The best method to obtain a high amount is to get access to a greenhouse. CO2 levels are usually kept high to get the best growing situation for your plants.
Feed your plants. The way your plants are growing can tell you what nutrients are lacking and need replacing. Some plants take up a lot of nutrients early in the growing season and quickly need a new supply. Look for signs of deficiency such as yellowing leaves and stunted growth. Feed the plant with a general purpose fertilizer, unless it has specific requirements. Foliage plants, for instance, prefer a fertilizer that is high in nitrogen.
To store your garden-fresh onions for use throughout the winter and avoid having them rot or mold, store them in pantyhose! Yes, pantyhose! Simply place the onions into the legs of pantyhose, and, to avoid letting them touch one another (which is what helps create mold and rot), place a twist tie between each onion and the next. To store, hang the pantyhose by the gusset in a cool dry place and cut off or pop a hole in the pantyhose to grab an onion when you need it.
If having a lot of color in your garden is what you like but you want a sense of continuity, the best way to achieve this effect is to use two colors consistently among all of your plantings. As you look at your garden, your eyes will be drawn to the continuity of color and the view will feel more harmonized to the senses.
To treat damping-off fungus, use chamomile tea. Brew a batch of chamomile tea, let it cool and pour a generous amount around the base of the seedlings. Use a spray bottle for the stems and foliage of the plant and you will keep damping-off fungus from destroying your garden.
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!
An excellent way to store the goodies from a homegrown garden is to freeze them in small batches. Using small sealable plastic bags and cutting small amounts of fresh vegetables every few days will help store the extras from the garden. Just bag and toss in the freezer and the packets can be added at any time to soups and pastas year round.
If the grass under your tree is turning brown, consider thinning out your tree. Grass needs plenty of sunshine, and chances are, your tree might be blocking out too much sunlight from the grass. If you trim back and thin out some branches your grass will get a little more sunshine.
The water that is leftover from the steamed vegetables is great to pour over them. If you have rhododendrons or gardenias, use coffee and tea grounds to acidify the soil. A natural cure for plant fungus is chamomile tea. Sprinkle some on the plant, and see if it works.
If your flower beds have diseased or dead plants in them, it is best to remove them as soon as possible to prevent the spread of disease. It is a good idea to clean out your flower beds in the fall so that the soil will benefit from freezing over the winter by killing the pests or disease-causing organisms in the soil. Cleaning out your beds in the fall will help prevent the spread of disease to your spring flowers.
The sun can cause irreparable skin damage; therefore, it is essential to dress accordingly when gardening. There are many ways to protect yourself from the sun’s damaging rays such as wearing sunglasses, sunscreen and wide-brimmed hats. Protecting yourself from the sun will lower your chances of getting skin cancer, as well as prevent premature aging from sun damage.
Follow the above suggestions to help you with your organic garden. Think of the benefits you get by gardening the natural way. Maybe the nutrition is your primary concern, or perhaps you are looking for a way to cut cost. Whatever the reason, enjoy taking a bit out of that ripe, juicy watermelon or a fresh, crisp carrot!