What is an Organic Garden and Do I Need One?
There has been an outcry over the past few years to ban pesticides and grow plants and vegetables more naturally, without interference from man-made materials like synthetic fertilizers; thus, organic gardening has become much more popular – almost the ‘in’ thing to do if you do any type of gardening.
First, let’s define organic gardening. When you choose to go organic, you are choosing to plant with the help of nature, not synthetics. You will not use any pesticides, synthetics, or other man-made materials. You WILL use raw products that nature produces to replenish the soil, like vegetable and fruit peelings, grass clippings and fall leaves.
Organic gardening takes careful planning and knowledge, specifically in relation to pest control. You will need to know the life cycles of certain pests and which ones are likely to destroy your plants. Organic gardeners usually allow for a certain amount of damage resulting from pests. Some pests do their damage for a short time, then move on. Did you know that in some parts of the world, farmers use black widow spiders to eat the harmful pests from their crops, such as grapes? The spiders will eat the pests but not the grapes!
There are other so-called pests that are actually beneficial to your garden. Lady bugs will eat your aphids, and birds love a grub buffet. Spiders, snakes and even lizards can help keep your garden free of plant-eating insects.
Most people choose to create an organic garden because they do not wish to pollute the air with pesticides, which are known to contain harmful cancer-causing ingredients. These pesticides not only kill pests, but also deplete the soil of vital nutrients. That is why most experts agree that the fruits and vegetables we eat are less nutritious today than in years past. Pesticides are also deadly to wildlife, pets and humans.
A good solution to pests in your garden is to use a variety of different plants. Not every insect will be attracted to every plant, so an infestation will be unlikely. You can also consider natural organic pesticides, which are less harmful to the environment.
Organic gardening is all about creating and maintaining rich, nutrient-rich soil and replenishing it with nature’s resources. Compost and organic gardening go hand-in-hand. If you care for the environment and Mother Earth, you may want to consider planting an organic garden, as opposed to one that uses pesticides.
Growing and maintaining an organic garden takes planning and patience. If you can accept the fact that you will have pests on occasion, you will have a pleasant, organic experience!