When the winter chill is out of the air and spring starts to settle in, a lot of people out there break out their shovels and plows and decide to plant a garden. If you want to plant a garden this year, why not make it an organic garden? Here are some fantastic tips you can use to make sure that your garden grows.
The handles on your gardening tools can be used as a convenient measuring instrument. Tools with substantial handles, like rakes, hoes and large shovels are great for taking measurements. Simply lay the handles out on the floor and run a measuring tape next to them. Have a marker handy, and mark the distance with it. When the need arises to measure something while in your garden, the measuring tool you need will literally be “on hand,” sketched into the handles of your tools.
Be sure to water your garden daily. Without daily water, your garden may quickly turn sour. If the idea of pulling out a hose daily is too much for you to stomach, consider installing some sort of sprinkler system. There is a cost, but it can save a lot of headaches and actually pay for itself via a healthy crop!
Divide large clumps of perennials. Some perennial plants lose vigor and flower less well if the clump becomes too large. Plants like Shasta daisies, bearded irises, phlox, chrysanthemum and coneflower benefit from being divided every three years. Without division they become congested, and the center of the clump will begin to die out. Simply dig the entire plant out, keeping the root ball intact, and divide it into pieces using a shovel. By doing this, you will have at least two or three new plants!
Buy Diatomaceous earth as an alternative to toxic pesticides or adding predatory insects to your garden. Diatomaceous earth is natural, organic, and non-toxic as well as inexpensive and easy to find. It is a green way to keep pests under control. Sprinkle over the surface of soil and water as normal.
Start a compost bin, and enjoy nutrient-rich fertilizer that you can use for your vegetable plants, herbs, flowers and more. Food scraps and peels, coffee grounds, eggshells, newspaper, paperboard, yard waste and other organic matter are perfect additions to your compost bin. Keep a small bucket or bag in your freezer as an odor-free way to collect kitchen waste, and empty the container into the outdoor bin when it is full.
To get rid of the snails plaguing your garden, set an open container of beer on its side where you usually find them. The snails will be drawn to the scent of the beer and trap themselves. If you’d like to make this trap even more effective, try adding a little bit of brewer’s yeast to the can.
Plan your garden for best results. Before you put one spade into the dirt, you need to decide what you will plant, and where. You want to plot your garden’s size, and then decide what plants use according to their individual needs. Consider lighting, drainage, and spacing for each plant.
To have the best flower garden pick plants that bloom at different times of the growing season. It is possible to find varieties of plants and flowers that bloom from January until November depending on where you live. By planting plants that peak at different times of the year you can ensure that there is always color and life in your yard.
Abandon mass plantings to make your flower garden more personal. Mass plantings in every flowerbed have a tendency to make a landscape look like it belongs to a hotel or a corporate office building. Border plants and pockets of similar plants will give the same effect of a mass planting without being impersonal.
If you want to get children in on the fun, plant a few strawberries, everbearing if possible. For kids, there are few things as fun as picking fruit fresh from the garden. Your children will be much more interesting in helping out if they know they’ll get to enjoy some tasty strawberries.
Establish a precise schedule to know when you should plant your seeds. Even if you are growing your plants indoors, you should follow a schedule that matches the season and outside temperature. Spend some time on your schedule at the beginning of a season and you should be able to improve it the next year.
Learn to water your garden efficiently. A soaker hose can be laid in the garden and left on with low water pressure. This frees you up from having to hand-water the plants, so you can do other gardening work. Take care with seedlings, though — they are still delicate and need to be watered by hand.
Pine can make for a great type of mulch. Acidic soil is a favorite of garden plants that are high in acidity. There is no better, or easier, way to make your acid-loving plants happy then to use pine needles you already have on your beds. Simply add a layer of pine needles a couple of inches deep to the plant beds. The needles will decompose over time and provide the soil with acidity.
One of the best things about a garden is that once you put in the initial labor, you can sit back and enjoy the fruits – or vegetables – of this labor as your garden begins to grow. Make sure that you’re using these tips correctly if you want to experience the best possible results with your organic garden.