In this weeks episode, we go over “hacks” that people use as crutches and how you can prevent them and even make your seeds better!
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Gardening 101: The Best Tips For A Thriving Garden
Long, long before mega-marts appeared offering two-thousand different types of food, people were wholly self-reliant and grew their own produce for sustenance. These days, whether it’s to get healthier or save some money, people are returning to those old days of organic gardening. Read these tips and find out how you can become a great gardener.
If your green thumb starts to wilt during those long winter months when your garden is buried beneath a foot of snow, learn how to grow microgreens to provide yourself with fresh, healthy salads, sandwich toppings and garnishes all year round. Microgreens require very little sunlight and are easy to grow indoors. Some common microgreens include kale, dill, basil, spinach, and chard.
Consider using organic fertilizers in your garden. These are safer than chemical fertilizers, which can build up salts in the ground over time. The salts restrict the ability of the plants to get water and nutrients from the soil. They can also kill helpful earthworms and microorganisms which eat thatch.
Store your seeds well. If you do not store your seeds properly, they will not last long. A great place to store your seeds in a dark spot that is cool and has low humidity. You could even use a refridgerator. You can use zip bags to hold the seeds themselves.
Be sure to water a tomato patch no more than once every five to seven days. However, when you do water, be sure to give the ground a thorough soaking. Tomatoes do best if the soil is wet deeply, unlike many plants which prefer a light misting more often. Also, be sure to water the ground, not the plants.
Try using latex or plastic gloves instead of cloth gardening gloves. Cloth gardening gloves do not block moisture well – a problem when working with moist soil, and they often get stiff, crinkly, and uncomfortable after a few uses. A sturdy pair of plastic or latex gloves, like those used for cleaning, are a much better choice. They protect against moisture, and cleaning is as simple as rinsing them off under a hose and hanging to dry.
Did you know that a tablespoon of powdered milk sprinkled around your rose bushes early in the season can help to prevent fungus growth on your beautiful flowers later in the spring? If you prefer to use a spray, you might try diluting some skim milk and spraying the plant leaves. The lower fat content in skim milk reduces the chance that it will turn rancid.
New gardeners should keep things simple. The tendency of new gardeners is to plant a garden that is just way too big and end up with a giant mess in the backyard. Keep it simple and small to start, and work up from there. A small garden will lead to a more positive experience and is less work for a new gardener.
If you have room, consider putting in a raised bed in your garden. A raised bed prevents soil compaction from people stepping on the soil. Raised beds also provide better drainage for your plants, allowing roots to breathe better. Another advantage is that you can control the soil quality better in a raised bed.
Choose one plant and make it the focal point of your garden. In any good garden design, a focal point will grab the eye and hold it there. The focal point should be a plant totally different from the others around it.
When you buy seeds for your garden, be sure to purchase seeds that are labeled “certified organic.” This ensures that your plants will be organic throughout their lifespan and that the seeds you are buying aren’t contaminated with chemical fertilizers or pesticides. Watch out for labels, such as “genetically engineered” or any mention of “natural” that does not include the phrase “certified organic.”
Economize when watering. When watering your garden, try to water using a vessel instead of a hose: this way you will be able to direct the water straight to the roots. Using a hose means that a lot of water will end up on the leaves, and may evaporate before it has a chance to reach the soil. Only water in the early morning or late evening, as this can help to reduce evaporation. Whenever you plant something new, it will require constant watering to become established, so if possible, put off new planting until the Fall. This way, nature will be able to do much of the watering for you.
There are many reasons one may wish to go to the opposite direction of modern technology and growing techniques. Regardless of your reasons, you can use these organic gardening tips to grow some of the best produce of your life. Focus on what you’ve learned here and implement these tactics.