If you are an at home gardener looking to find a better way to grow healthy, nutritious produce, look no further! Today, here on our blog, we are you some great tips on how to get started organic gardening.
Get Started Organic Gardening: Prepare your Garden Area.
Several weeks before the start of your growing season is the time to prepare. It takes time and care to attend to your soil and seedlings to ensure that they are ready to be planted on time. Begin by turning your soil. At least the top 12 inches of soil should be broken up (turned) to allow light, air circulation and moisture to become naturally balance. When you are turning your soil, use a ½ inch layer of well composted material to the soil to enhance its nutrients. After you have finish, clean the surface of your soil removing all debris, weeds, etc.
In the weeks leading up to starting your garden, you will need to watch your planned garden area to see if weeds sprout. If so, pull them, turn the soil again and let it sit. Do this until you have gone many days with no signs of weed growth.
Get Started Organic Gardening: Start your seeds.
If you plan to start your garden with seedlings, now is the time to begin them, indoors, especially if you live in a cooler climate. There are many “starter” kits on the market that contain biodegradable tiny “pots” that allow you to start the seeds germination process with ease. Begin your seeds according to recommended specifications for the particular plant and area (see gardening zone generalizations). Be sure to place your starters in an adequately lit, warm location to minimize germination time.
Get Started Organic Gardening: Transplant your seedlings or potted plants.
Once your seedlings are nearing 8-12 inches in height, and your soil is prepared, it is time to transplant to the ground. Wet the soil but do not SOAK it or you risk waterlogging your seedlings. It is best to moisten the ground BEFORE you plant, rather than soaking the topsoil after the plants are in the ground. For transplanting, dig small holes no deeper than the plant’s potted container, and double the width. Before placing the plant into the ground you can either water the roots directly, or add water to the hole before placing the seedling into the ground. Plants need this extra boost as they cannot begin to extract water from the soil until their roots systems are growing on pace.
When transplanting, place the plant into the hole only as far as the plant sat into the pot itself. Placing it deeper into the ground can cause root rot which can kill your plant.
Get Started Organic Gardening: Sow your seeds.
If you are planting with seeds, use a garden hoe to create a channel. Place seeds only as deep as the diameter of the seed itself. This is the optimal depth for seeds to be placed into the ground. Cover your seeds with soil as is appropriate remembering that some seeds will need light to germinate. For those type plants, cover seeds sparingly.
Get Started Organic Gardening: Water appropriately.
Check your garden twice daily to ensure that the soil is kept moist but not soaked. The right time to water is when your soil is looking dry. Soaking your garden or leaving standing water is not healthy for it. It can promote fungi growth. Only water when your plants actually need it.
We hope these tips will get you well on your way to a healthy beautiful organic gardening experience. Check back next week for tips on how to fight weeds in an organic garden!