All of us must have planted at least one seed in our grade school, in a cup of dirt and water and watched a tiny plant sprout out. Even today many of us are fond of or wish for a home grown vegetable garden. But did you know by doing so you are actually unconsciously doing a great favour to our environment and the planet? It goes by the term ‘Organic Farming’.
Let me take you on an information ride about ‘Organic Farming’ and share with you a complete guide on how to grow organic vegetables at home.
So what’s Organic Farming? And why there’s an imminent need to it?
In simple words Organic Farming is producing crops and livestock by optimising the health of the agro-ecosystem by avoiding the use of synthetically compounded fertilisers, pesticides, growth hormones, and antibiotics.
A good organic farming system highly relies upon crop rotations, animal manures, crop residues, bio wastes, green manures etc. for production. The imminent need of organic farming in developed countries is due to;
- Protect environment, decrease water and environmental pollution, and soil erosion and degradation.
- Improve the longevity of fertile soils
- Bring in biological diversity within the agro-system
- Promote better health of livestock which also improves the community and people’s health.
- Recycle materials, bio wastes and other resources to greatest extent.
- Combat water management problems.
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Can We Grow Organic Vegetables At Home? How Should We Go About It?
Yes, you can grow your organic vegetables at home under healthy climatic conditions. Most vegetables can be grown with at least 6 hours of direct sunlight. However under poor soil conditions, a good amount of compost also works.
Did you know organically grown vegetables contain 40% more antioxidants and higher percentage of vitamins and phytochemicals than conventionally grown produces?
A Guide to Organic Vegetable Gardening for Beginners
Learn how to grow organic vegetables in containers anywhere with these simple tips. Be it growing in pots or terrace or any indoor location, there are certain things you need to remember such as;
1) The Site:
Growing plants in the right place will make a huge difference. Choose a spot that offers maximum direct sunlight (6 -8 hours). Don’t go for a garden bed that slopes or have depressions. Don’t place your garden in a windy place. Choose a convenient place that has easy access to water, compost and gardening tools.
2) The Soil:
If you want to learn how to grow organic vegetables at home, or outdoors, it’s vital to assess your existing soil for your pots and ground first. A raised bed ground or large pot is most preferable for soil fertility. A quick soil test at a nearby nursery or garden center may help you overcome any soil issue like nutrient deficiencies or Ph level issues.
3) The Seeds and Plants:
For an organic garden, you would need organically grown plants and seeds because traditional ones are oftentimes loaded with pesticides and chemical fertilisers. You can easily get organic seeds from local nurseries, herbariums or big stores these days.
4) The Harvest: Vegetables You Can Organically Grow at Home
Now that your soil is amended, and garden and seed nursery is sited, the final step is to plant, grow and harvest – the most crucial one, mind you.
Look up and research to find out the types of vegetables you can organically grow at home without much effort. Here’s a list of vegetables that any beginner can plant and harvest at home. Most of these veggies can be grown in pots, in large containers and even at your home terrace.
- Beans and Peas
- Carrots and Radishes
- Cole crops like Cauliflower, Broccoli and Cabbage
- Tender Crops like Peppers, Chillies Aubergines and Tomatoes
Things To Keep in Mind When Growing Your Organic Garden
- Choose natural products like well- rotted animal manure (rabbit, horse, sheep, and chickens) or packaged organic materials to feed your plant. Don’t feed a rich soil frequently as it may result to soft lush growths, an ideal habitat for pests.
- Practice a rotational planting technique. Don’t plant same vegetables and their families in the same spot every time. Same spots harvest diseases. So it’s good to change planting place to avoid infestation.
- Mulching is very important as it prevents weeding, fungal growth, and evaporation. Use organic material (1 – 2 inch thickness) like weed-free straw, cocoa hull etc. to mulch.
- Keep your plants clean and devoid of fallen foliage. Throw dead or diseased leaves in trash to avoid spreading of diseases.
- Cut down weeds at its roots; the earlier the better. Weeds not only spoil plants by taking their nutrients and water but they also attract insects.
- Watering the plant at the right time may boost plant health. Do not water plants in the noon or evening as wet leaves are prone to diseases. Use soaker hose instead of sprinklers to water.
- Planting flowers such as sunflower, daisy, marigold etc. is essential as flowers attract good bugs that attack insects and pests and keep your plants healthy.
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Best Ideas About How to Organic Vegetables At Home
Organic Vegetables in Pots and Containers
As a beginner if you learn how to grow organic vegetables in pots expertly, in the future it would be easier for you to plant and maintain a fully-fledged garden.
Organic Vegetables in Terrace and Balcony
A terrace or balcony could be an ideal place for growing veggies after a backyard. But before you learn how to grow organic vegetables in terrace, remember that your terrace should be built in a different way unlike usual terraces. It should have waterproofing facilities and must be built with sturdier materials.
Indoor Organic Vegetable Growing
You will be surprised to know there are so many veggies which you can grow indoors. The ideas are innumerable. Have a look. Our 18+ Creative And Easy DIY Indoor Herb Garden Ideas may inspire you.
Outdoor Organic Vegetable Growing
And of course, a backyard or a porch is the ideal place for a fully-fledged vegetable garden.
Let’s incorporate organic farming in our lives and build a better eco-system and stronger community. Hope my article on how to grow organic vegetables at home was insightful. If you know any useful beginner’s tip, do share with us in the comments.