vegetable gardening

The Basics of Organic Vegetable Gardening

Vegetable gardening is a fun hobby that can be relaxing, but also useful for growing great vegetables for your family. But for those who worry about the chemicals used in gardening, organic vegetable gardening is a way to try to control what chemicals go into your family’s foods.

Organic vegetable gardening uses materials that come from natural sources in order to avoid some of the odd cocktails of chemicals that you might get from traditional gardening supplies. If you’re just getting a start with organic vegetable gardening, here are a few tips.

Start With the Soil

There are plenty of chemical fertilizers, but it can be cheaper and just as effective to use manure or compost to fertilize your garden. Either source uses waste materials in order to give your plants the nutrients they need. Manure can be bought from garden shops or from local farmers if needed, and compost is easy enough to make from your family’s garbage. By using natural materials when getting started on the soil in organic vegetable gardening, you’re starting with a great base for your garden.

Combating Pests

One of the hardest things about organic vegetable gardening is dealing with pests. Sure, chemicals are great for dealing with them, but to skew things in your favor, start with preventative methods in your garden. Choosing to grow plants native to your area is the best way to do this, since such plants will have built up their own resistances to local pests. Rotating crops also will help to prevent pests from getting your plants when you’re doing organic vegetable gardening. By avoiding the temptation to plant the same sort of vegetable in the same place twice in a row, you will cut down on the number of pests that get to those plants.

In organic vegetable gardening, another great way to help keep the pests away is to encourage natural enemies to grow. Ladybugs and other helpful insects will help to keep control on the bugs in your garden, and some plants can be added to your garden to act as cover crops, natural protectors against certain pests. Usually, these are plants with some sort of immunity to the pest or one the pest has a particular dislike for.

If the Pests Come

If you do end up with pests, there are natural chemicals that can be used, such as sprays made from hot peppers and water, which can combat the pests without adding strange chemicals when doing organic vegetable gardening. You can also handpick them off your plants to eliminate them, though this of course can be time-consuming. Keep in mind that organic vegetable gardening sometimes requires more work than regular gardening, but if you keep at it, you’ll be rewarded with healthy, chemical-free vegetables.


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Gardening Tip #11

Some plants require re-potting for optimum growth but there are others that resent having their roots disturbed. Or their roots system may be small enough that they don't require re-potting. One way to check if your plant needs re-potting is to turn it upside down. Tap the pot to release the plant and check its roots. If roots are all you see, then re-pot. Sometimes the roots will come out of the pot. You should either cut them off or re-pot the plant.