Getting started with organic gardening:
As with most things in life the best way to get started is just do it -- start now!
Give up all chemicals you use in the garden. No more poisons for killing aphids, no
more poisons for killing weeds, and no more nitrate filled commercial fertilizers.
There are natural organic methods that can take the place of each one of these man-made
All organic fertilizers are products of plant, animal, or mineral origin. The
nutrients they contain are broken down slowly by microorganisms living in the soil.
This gradual or slow release process is much better for the plant than the quick fix
provided by commercial fertilizers. The high concentration of nutrients absorbed all
at once with commercials fertilizers often results in fast sappy growth which is
vulnerable to insect and disease attack. Examples of organic fertilizers include
blood meal, bone meal, fish emulsion, seaweed meal, phosphate rock, and
Barnyard manures are a key ingredient in the organic soil fertility program.
Manure can be composted with garden waste and kitchen scraps to produce a high fertility compost for the garden. Manure should always be composted
before use in order to stabilize the nutrients.
Prevention is always better than a cure.... the most effective technique for
controlling weeds is to eradicate them before they have time to set seed and produce even
more weeds. Mulching is the second most effective way to combat weeds. A thick layer
of mulch prevents many weed seeds from germinating by smothering out light. For
weeding paths and areas of the garden with hard surfaces such as between pavers or
stepping stones you can use a technique called "thermal weeding". This
involves using some type of heat to kill the weed. There are propane torches on the
market for just this purpose.
Pest and Disease Control:
It is the goal of the organic gardener to work with nature to limit the damage caused by
pest and diseases without the use of toxic chemicals. It is a far cry form the
pest-free disease-free garden promoted by the gardening industry. The organic gardener is
a realistic gardener who can accept the occasional blemish and imperfections that show up
in the garden. Organic techniques for pest and disease control include: