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Tips For Newbies To Organic Gardening
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Tips For Newbies To Organic Gardening

Home grown fruit and vegetables are far more flavoursome than those you buy in the supermarket and if they are grown organically, they're much better for both you and the environment. Here are a few simple tips for would-be organic gardeners. Enjoy!

Sunshine: Most fruits and veggies need full sun (at least 8 hours per day) to really flourish and photosynthesise to the max. The more sun they get, the better they taste and the more vitamins they contain.

Start small: You don't need a huge plot to get you started. Dense planting over an area of about 100 square feet is enough to grow a lot of food if you're clever about what you plant.

Soil quality: To make good soil, you need to incorporate top quality compost into the top few inches. You also need to maintain a two to four inch layer of straw or leaf mulch, rather than bark, wood chip or stones and to provide plenty of water.

Don't start your own seed at first: For the beginner gardener, it's not against the rules to buy your plants initially from a garden centre. You can grow everything from seed of course but this takes up space indoors if you don't have a greenhouse and can be a bit tricky and fiddly. You can also seed directly into the soil in the spring time, depending upon what you want to grow.

Fertiliser: Good soil takes many years to develop, so in the meantime, liquid fertiliser is very useful and you can choose organic varieties rather than synthetic. Sea minerals and blood, fish and bone are all popular and readily available. You may have to pay slightly more for organic products but the results will be better in the long run. Your garden will require regular applications of fertiliser throughout the growing season, around once a month or so.

Microbes: Microbes are extremely important for your soil quality and the growth and wellbeing of your plants. Mix a microbial inoculant, compost tea or effective microorganisms are good, together with a source of sugar such as molasses and add this to your preferred fertiliser. The sugar is necessary to provide food for the microbes.

Water: Together with heat and light, water is a vital element of the requirements for plant growth. Newly seeded areas will require watering daily and young plants every two to three days or so depending upon the prevailing weather conditions. Once plants are established you will need to water less frequently but more deeply to encourage deep root penetration.'

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