We’re always told that we need to be more environmentally friendly in the way we lead our lives, and using organic product is just one way of doing this. It’s also well-talked about that organic produce and products are better for our health. But how do we continue this organic living in the garden? This guide should provide you with a few ideas!
Make Organic Compost
Not only is this eco-friendly, it will provide plenty of nutrients for the plants in your garden, so has multiple benefits! An area that has been well-composted will also need watering less as the compost will help the soil retain its moisture.
To make compost you must add a draining layer to the bottom of your compost heap, such as straw or twigs. Then, you should add layers of damp garden waste, such as leaves, to the compost heap. You should then add a layer of heat (manure, for example) to help break down the waste, and sprinkle with a layer of soil. You should then cover the heap with a layer or carpet, or tarpaulin and leave for a few months to break down.
Fertilise without Chemicals
Your first point of call might be to head to the garden centre to buy some chemical fertiliser, but there are other ways to fertilise your plants that can be less expensive and kinder to your garden:
- Use compost to provide your plants with the nutrients they need. The compost will work best if the soil used in it comes from the patch that you wish to fertilise.
- Use fish emulsion of sea kelp to really help accelerate plant growth, especially after harsh windy weather.
- Plant cover crops, such as clover or annual rye. These help to keep nutrients locked into the soil, adding nitrogen as they break down.
Control Weeds Naturally
Instead of opting for a heavy-duty chemical weed killer, why not get rid of them the natural way. You can prevent them by mulching or spreading leaf mould over areas that you do not wish weeds to grow. If you do find weeds, pull them out gently by hand or with a hoe to ensure the whole root is out. However, it is important that you dispose of the weeds correctly. Adding them to your compost bin could just encourage them to reproduce, which does not solve your problem.
Control Insects Naturally
The quickest solution to pest control is shop bought chemicals. However, these are not kind to the environment, or necessarily any good for your plants. Instead, why not use other insects as a control method. For example, parasitic wasps will control whitefly in greenhouses and there are small worms that will control weevil grubs. You could also opt to make the most out of wildlife in your garden: create places for ladybirds to nest and you will see the rewards they bring.
Do you have any more tips on how to garden organically? Perhaps you have a favourite organic product to use? Let us know in the comments section below!
[Photo Credit: antonychammond ]