Organic Gardening in Home Gardens
Home organic gardens have become increasingly popular over the last several
years. Whether we know it or not, many of us already practice forms of organic
gardening. We just don't give it any thought. We do it for our health, and
the health of the environment.
Organic gardening is the practice of growing vegetables, herbs and fruits
using only things found in nature. Absolutely no man-made chemicals are used.
Although we usually do not think of it, organic gardening concepts also apply
to the world of flowers, trees, shrubs, and even your lawn. It is the practice
of gardening without harmful and artificial chemicals, or other products
not naturally found in nature. Commonly today, potentially harmful chemicals
and non-natural products are used for fertilizing, and for control of insects,
disease, and weeds.
Did you Know? Organic food sales are over $10Billion annually! It's
no small cottage industry.
If you are not completely sold on organic gardening, you can still bring
some of it's benefits to yourself, your family, and the environment, by applying
concepts that work best for you and your crop. Any organic methods that you
employ will benefit you and the environment.
Certified Organic- In order for produce in the marketplace to have
this certification, the crops must be grown under strict USDA guidelines.
Everything from the seed to fertilizers and soil must be natural ingredients.
Federal inspectors review certification applications and perform inspections.
See the path of organic
produce takes to reach your dinner table.
Components of Organic Gardening:
Learn how to grow organically. Your organic gardening program consists of
the following components:
Garden seeds - If you have
decided to grow organically, organic seeds are the all important starting
point. While we most often think of organic vegetable seeds, organic herb
seeds are also readily available.
Garden soil and soil amendments
- Your garden soil should be virgin soil that has never seen harmful chemicals.
Fertilizers - Add only
organic compost, manure, mulch, fish emulsion, seaweed fertilizers, and other
Compost tea - feed your plants with free,
Organic Manure tea - feed your plants
control - There's a whole lot of harmful insecticides out there. Learn
about effective organic insect controls.
Disease control -
Chemical disease control is not good for you, your family, or the environment.
There are alternatives.
Beneficial Insects -
Let the good insects go after the bad ones.
Homemade Organic Spray Recipes
Vermicomposting or Worm
Composting - Worms have been making natural fertilizer since the beginning
More on Organic Gardening:
In the News:
The USDA has standardized rules for Organic food.
The USDA States uniform standards provide:
A single national standard replacing individual state and private standards
Consistent and accurate labeling to alleviate consumer confusion
Define uniform practices, methods and substances for producing crops organically.
Prohibits the use of genetic engineering, irradiation and sewage sludge.
Improve exports through a single standard that is more readily understood
in other countries.
For more information, see the USDA's pages on the
** Place fruits like pumpkin and squash on a bed of sand. Snails
and slugs do not like sand and will not cross over it. You will not need
to use slug and snail poisons.
** Use Companion plants that repel insects. See
The major benefits of organic gardening are many:
Less harmful chemicals on the food you and your family may eat. This is reason
Less harm to the environment
Cost savings as alternate sources can save you money
You will feel better knowing you are doing your part.
Ways we Practice Organic Gardening Today:
Organic Gardening takes many forms. It includes:
Use compost for mulch and fertilizer in your garden.
Use only plant matter for mulching.....no plastics. Leaves and straw work
Use manures for fertilizer in place of chemical fertilizer.
Learn and apply proper techniques to grow healthy plants and avoid plant
Acquiring natural insect enemies, such as Ladybugs for aphids and preying
mantis, to control insect problems.
Using natural insecticides and deterrents such as garlic or soap sprays to
deter insects. No insecticides or pesticides.
Use natural insect predators like Preying Mantis and Ladybugs. If they do
not exist in your area, companies sell them.
Use a little extra muscle power to control weeds, versus using weed killer.
A willingness to give up a little portion of your crop to the bugs in order
to produce and consume healthier food for you and your family.
Conserve and recycle. By using natural materials like manure, composted weeds
and kitchen scraps we are using organic materials and reducing what goes
into the waste stream.
About the USDA
Buy Organic Seeds and Supplies - Seeds, worm
composters, fertilizer, fish emulsion, repellents, and more.
Make your own fertilizer. The Compact ComposTumbler converts kitchen
and yard waste into rich, organic compost. It's the "Go Green" movement.
Buy a Composter now
Yard & Deck:
Gory, Scary Props