Organic Garden Tips And Tricks For New Growers

Because horticulture has been around for centuries, people have developed many ways to grow fresh, organic fruits and vegetables that will not require the use of dangerous chemicals. More »

Improve Your Organic Gardening Skills By Trying These Ideas

Organic gardening is not as easy as some may think! There is a lot more to it than just watering some seeds or digging around in the dirt. It is truly an art form. More »

Great Tips And Advice For Organic Growing

Taking your hobby of gardening an extra step and using organic materials, can be beneficial for the plants you grow, as well as, the environment! Instead of using pesticides and toxic weed-killing sol More »

Organic Gardening Tips That Will Help You Get A Better Garden!

A lot of us plant our gardens during the spring and summer months in order to have fresh vegetables for our families. More »

Organic Gardening Tips From Very Experienced People

Today, organic gardening is an incredibly popular hobby and career that is emerging. The demand for products that come from organic grown plants and crops is numerous. More »

 

Crop Rotation 101

There are certain things every gardener should know, and we’ve been writing about them in one of our previous articles. Here we bring you some more detailed information about a phenomena called crop rotation. Crop rotation is the practice of growing a series of dissimilar or different types of crop in the same area in sequenced seasons. This is practiced because it gives various nutrients to the soil.

A traditional element of crop rotation is the replenishment of nitrogen through the use of green manure in sequence with cereals and other crops. Crop rotation can also destroy the build-up of pathogens that often occur when one specie is continuously cropped. It can also improve soil structure and fertility by alternating deep-rooted and shallow-rooted plants.

Keeping the fields under continuous production is the main benefit of crop rotation. Believe it or not, crop rotation can also save you money. Overall financial risks are more widely distributed over more diverse production of crops and/or livestock. Less reliance is placed on purchased inputs and over time crops can maintain production goals with fewer inputs.

Growing Organic Strawberries

You’ve decided to grow strawberries, but you know nothing about them? Don’t worry, this article will clear some things up for you. Homegrown strawberries are a thousand times tastier than the ones from the local store. Strawberry types vary in their growth habits and fruiting times. There are several types of them, considering prolonged productivity and the unique flavor of each type.

June-bearing strawberries

This type of strawberries produce their crop over three weeks from late spring to early summer. Because of their earliness, high quality and concentrated set, June-bearers are the best for preserving.

Ever-bearing strawberries

…or day-neutral strawberries, produce a heavy set of berries in early summer followed by several more lighter flushes in late summer and fall. Cool temperatures is what they need to develop a good fruit set. This type of strawberries is good for large containers or raised beds where you can give them attentive watering and regular feeding.

Alpine strawberries

This intensely flavored berries can be red, yellow or white, depending on the variety. Many varieties do not produce runners but do rebloom and set fruit intermittently all summer. Because of their small size, alpine strawberries are easiest to pick if grown in raised beds or roomy planters.

Musk strawberries

Musk strawberries produce small fruits with a pungent aroma and complex flavor. Berries tend to be precious and few. Try to improve the fruit set by adding male plants every couple of years. This type is too tall for containers.

Basic Organic Gardening Skills For Beginners – Part Two

In our previous article we have started talking about basic organic gardening skills every beginner should try to master. Here we bring you part two of this list, continuing with a few more essential skills.

Proper irrigation techniques

If you can’t water the plants on a regular basis, don’t bother planting it. An inch of precipitation (or irrigation) per week is the standard for summer vegetable gardens. Newly seeded areas may need a little water every day, while established plants will perform better with more water each time but less frequently. Some crops will require more water as the fruit develops, so pay attention to that too.

A plan for a crop rotation

Crop rotation goes hand-in-hand with both soil fertility and pest management. A good crop rotation will have crops with differing nutrient needs and pest threats succeeding one another on particular garden rows/beds. Crop rotation should be practiced each time a new crop is planted whether in successive years or within the same growing season.

Pest management

A well-chosen, planted and maintained plant will have minimal stress factors allowing infestation to occur. However, there are times when insect populations or fungal spores are most robust in the garden. Knowing the difference between signs and symptoms of insect damage and disease damage is critical in determining an effective course of action.

Basic Organic Gardening Skills For Beginners – Part One

If you love the idea of having your own organic garden, but have doubts if you should give it a try, follow this list of basic skills every new organic gardener needs to learn, and soon you’ll become an expert.

Making compost

In organic gardening, the process begins and ends with soil. Making compost out of vegetable scraps, crop residue, weeds, manure and other sources ensures the formation of humus, a long-term builder of soil fertility, much better than just tilling these things directly into the soil.

Starting plants from seeds

If you want to stay completely away from the use and residues of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, as well as to open up the full choice of crop varietal options, the ability to start plants from seeds is essential. This skill gives gardeners the option to choose organic certified seed, to choose or make on organic seed starting mix, and control all fertilizer and pest control inputs related to the crop.

Proper planting techniques

The techniques related to planting will differ for each crop, and whether the crop is sown directly into the garden or started indoors and transplanted to the garden. Planting depth, spacing and all requirements for temperature, soil, sun, water and nutrients are all basic factors for the survival and success of the crop. Most crops will have some margin for error, but too many stress factors can lead to crop failure. The best way to minimize problems here is to start small. Get comfortable with a few crops at first, and then expand as you learn more.

How To Grow Organic Cucumbers

Cucumbers are generally divided into two types – slicing and pickling. Slicing cucumbers are grown for fresh eating and they typically grow around eight inches long, with smooth skin. Pickling cucumbers are harvested much smaller, from two to three inches (cornichons). Bumpy skin is a sure sign that you are growing a pickling cucumber.

If you want to grow cucumbers, you must know that cold weather and cucumbers are not best friends. Cucumber seeds won’t germinate until the soil temperature hits around 70 degrees. Cucumbers demand constantly warm weather. You can start seeds indoors, but they’ll grow really quickly, so it won’t save you much time.

On the other side, cucumbers and water are very good friends. Cucumbers absolutely love water. You’ll need to keep them consistently moist, and once they start to set fruit, they’ll require even more water. Regular watering is essential.

If you choose to grow them in containers, a good organic potting soil with a bit of compost or vermicompost will do the work. Feed garden-grown cucumbers monthly with fish emulsion or compost tea, and feed container-grown ones weekly with a diluted dose of fish emulsion or compost tea, about ¼ strenght.