It is generally accepted that the intake of vegetables makes one healthier and as such, it should be included in our everyday eating habits. There is a good number of people who may not know much about what an organic vegetable really is. Basically, an organic vegetable gardening is one of the easiest ways of planting or growing vegetables with no use of synthetic products like fertilizers and pesticides. This kind of gardening is said to be working with nature and its elements to attain the yield that they want.
What are organic vegetable garden basics?
While making a choice of what is the right vegetable that you want to plant in your organic garden, it is important that equally check on the soil and climate of the area. For example, if you are planning to plant your vegetables in an area that experience drought, please consider planting those vegetables that do not consume a lot of water and can endure drought condition without wilting or even drying up.
First things first, before you even drop these seeds into the soil for germination, please ensure that your seed bed is ready. Consider the right tillage for your vegetable garden to ensure complete eradication of weeds and rocks debris.
The next thing you need to do is making sure that your soil is well supplied with the right content of Nitrogen, potassium and phosphorous for the best growth of your vegetables. How do you achieve this? Well, with the use of bone meal or rock sulfate, compost and greensand, you avail the right content of the above components. Something else, if your soil pH is very high, please consider adding sulfur or lime to adjust it. A pH of 7 is recommended.
After the above step, please ensure you add organic fertilizer to your soil. To achieve this, you can make use of recycled leaves, grass clippings, eggshells, coffee grounds as well as kitchen waste. Please note that this process should be applied in a period about four weeks before planting your vegetables.
When it’s time to place your vegetable seeds in the soil, what is the procedure? It is important that one considers factors like the spacing. The reason for that is because we do not want our plants to use their roots to fight for water. To avoid weeds from growing between the spaces, we can choose to plant other things as well since the tighter the space is, the less weeds will germinate. Another reason to consider correct spacing is to ensure that the plants get enough sunlight.
Once your seeds germinate, there’s a major threat that follows them. This is the infestation by pests. How do you as a farmer fight them? Through the use of other animals like frogs and birds or even other insects. How do you achieve this? As a farmer, you can think of creating an ideal environment that controls the pests as well as the existence of these animals that you will use to control the pest.
Putting a bird house or enacting a pond close to your garden can help a lot. Once they are in place, they will do the necessary, patrol your garden for you by eating the pests that invade on your crops. Predators such as ladybugs, preying mantis and hornet are said to be an alternative to insecticides and pesticides.
Another way of controlling these pests is by enacting barriers. These barriers can go a long way in protecting your vegetables from being invaded by the various pests. For example, Row covers are said to prevent moths from landing on your crops and even laying eggs. Also, a farmer may use sticky traps as well as foil collars that go a long way in stopping pests and borers.
Another way to control weeds is through the utilization of mulching. Mulching is the mixture of the leaf molds, manure, garden compost as well as chipped bark. Mulching also helps in preserving the moisture content in the soil.
It is equally important to understand that there are readily available organic pesticides that a farmer can use to control these pests. Some can kill one or two kinds of pests, so it is important once you choose to purchase them make yourself familiar of what pest you are controlling.
Let’s now look at soil fertility preservation. The best way a farmer can ensure that the soil is well preserved is by ensuring crop rotation. This is achieved after the harvesting is done so that it is ready for another planting season. In this case, a farmer should ensure that the same piece of land a different vegetable is planted.
The top benefits of organic vegetable gardening
Organic vegetable gardening has gained a lot of popularity all over the world. Lets us look at the reason why.
-Organic vegetable farming saves a lot of money.
It is possible to save a lot of money when one considers doing organic vegetable farming. This is despite the setup cost of the tools used, fertilizers, equipment as well as water. There’s is one sure way of counterbalancing these costs of establishing the garden and that is through maximization of the farm produce. To achieve this one should consider planting those vegetables that they can consume, those that can be frozen easily like tomatoes, sweet corn and the likes of beets and cucumbers.
Their consumption can be considered even after the growing season. This way one reduces their grocery bill thus saving a lot. Storage of other vegetables like squash and potatoes can be achieved without being cooked.
-Reducing Your Carbon Footprint is an equally major reason for the popularity of the organic vegetable gardening movement.
The growing of organic vegetable garden ensures there is a continuing contribution in the sustenance of our planet. How is this achieved? Vegetables do not add carbon dioxide to our environment. They are also said to have a positive impact on our food miles’ (that distance that we cover to and from the supermarket to purchase vegetables.)
Carbon dioxide and methane are also produced when organic matter ends up at in landfill. This is achieved in the process of composting plant material while producing organic fertilizer intended to add nutrients to the soil for use by the vegetables.
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