Water Conservation For Everyone

February 17, 2009 by  
Filed under Organic Gardening Tips

Whether you live in a drought-influenced area, or you are simply looking for a way to reduce your water usage, you'll find that there are many things that you can try when it comes to preserving the water that you can find and using the water that you have conservatively and wisely. Water conservation is something that any green gardener should consider, and you'll find that doing so is actually a great deal more straightforward than you might think. The first thing that you can do when you want to consider water conservation is to think about a good water delivery system. There are several practical methods to get water to your garden, and you may be surprised to find that one of the best ones that you can use is a water can. A watering can will let you target each plant individually and to figure out how much water each plants gets; the directed spout will also let the water go right through to the roots. You may also wist to consider a soaker hose or drip irrigation. A soaker hose will sweat water through the pores of the hose, for the water to get to where it needs to go with virtually no evaporation. You can set them up with a timer and you can bury them under mulch, and once down there, they need very little maintenance. As a bonus, many soaker hoses are made from recycled tires. Drip irrigation will give you the most water efficiency, and they work by setting up a tube along the plants with a release point for each plant. When a plant doesn't need water, a plug can be installed and the tube itself can beset with a timer. Finally, you'll also want to think about where you can get the water from. While you'll always have a hose from your home, you'll find that you can effectively water your plants using water collected during the storms. You can simply install a basin underneath a gutter pour downspout, or you can use rain chains to direct water into a barrel or an underground holding tank. Do keep in mind that the container should be covered, and that the water collected should be used in ten days to avoid contamination or breeding mosquitoes. Take a look at the many ways that you can conserve water for your garden, and you'll find that there are plenty of options open to you!

Starting an Organic Garden

February 17, 2009 by  
Filed under Featured, Organic Gardening Tips

When you are looking to grow food for your family and loved ones, you already know that you want it to be healthy and nutritious, and one of the best ways to do this is to make sure that your garden is organic! Organic gardening not only allows you to grow food that is free of chemicals or additives, but it also promote ecological responsibility and has low impact consequences for the environment. If you are looking grow an organic garden, you'll find that there are plenty of tips to get you started. One of the best ways to get started with an organic garden is to get a hold of some heirloom seeds. You'll find that heirloom seeds are taken from plants that were once common in human history; as such, they have not been genetically modified and as a rule, they tend to be fairly tough. They are not hybrids, and there are around 4,000 varieties of seeds, so you'll be able to take your choice. When working with organic gardening, you'll find that it is always a good idea to consider the lay out of your garden. You'll find, for instance, that you can work with intensive intercropping, where you'll find that one crop is grown between rows of another; this will allow you to take full advantage of your gardening space, and reduce your water and composting requirements. You'll find that gardening boxes is another way to maximize your space. Organic gardening also implies that you will be free from the use of chemical pesticides and additives; this does not mean, however, that you are letting your garden run rampant with weeds and bugs! You'll find that by planting some flowers and herbs around your garden, you'll be strengthening its immunity to insects. Consider marigolds, mints and chives for a start. You'll also find that you can deter pests by rotating your crops annually. Any good organic garden needs a fair amount of planning, and the more you plan, the more prepared you are going to be. Take the time to consider what you can do to make sure that your organic garden continues to feed you and nourish you in the future!

Start Composting On Your Own

February 17, 2009 by  
Filed under Organic Fertillzers, Organic Gardening Tips

If you have seen the effects of composting on other gardens, or if you know that a compost heap can severely reduce your ecological footprint and save a great deal of space in the landfills, you already know that you are interested in putting one together, but you may be a little bit uncertain as to how to get started. A healthy and thriving compost heap is something that takes some time and effort to get rolling, but you’ll find that with a little bit of information that it is really quite straightforward!

The first thing that you need to do is to start thinking of things in terms of what can and cannot go into your compost pile. Brown materials include things like leaves and hay, but you’ll find that they also include clean shredded paper, cardboard rolls, dryer lint that hasn’t used dryer sheets, and shredded newspapers count as well. Green materials are things like grass clipping, vegetable leavings, tea bags, coffee grounds, manure and fruit trimmings. Green and brown materials can be used in your composting, while things like cat litter, colored paper, dairy products and greasy materials, should be kept away.

To make a traditional compost pile, you’ll need both green and brown materials, and you can put them into a pile that is roughly two to three feet square. You can also work with a compost bin, which will let you keep the pile more contained; some bins even give you the option of tumbling the compost to increase the heat reaction.

After you have your compost pile together, you should add a little bit of garden soil or a compost booster in order to help with the break down. You’ll find that this is something that you can do to get it started, but that you can also do it from time to time to keep things happening.

Make sure that your turn your compost pile several times a week to keep up the oxygen flow and to help things break down very quickly. You’ll also need to keep your compost pile a little damp, but not soaking wet; you’ll find that this will encourage a good breakdown of the components involved.

When you are considering composting, you’ll find that there are many things to consider, but you’ll find that with the information listed above, you can get yourself off to a great start!

Organic Care For Your Lawn!

February 17, 2009 by  
Filed under Organic Gardening Tips

If you are someone who has investment in your lawn looking good, you have probably seen plenty of chemical pesticides and additives that will allow your lawn to do just that, but what if you are interested in a green solution? The truth of the matter is that it is fairly simple to take care of your lawn in an organic way while sacrificing nothing when it comes to looks! When you are considering organic lawn care, start with the few basic steps listed below.

The first thing that you can do is to make sure that your mower is set as high as it should go. This should leave you with a clearance of about three to four instances. You may worry that if you cut it longer that you’ll have to mow more often, but you’ll find that this is actually completely untrue. The shorter you cut your lawn the faster it will grow; when grass is cut, it will use a lot of stored sugar to grow back, and you’ll find that this expenditure of energy will make it more vulnerable to pests.

The second thing that you can do to make sure that your lawn looks great and stays natural is to check the pH of the soil. You’ll find that there are plenty of services that will help you out with this, and this can help you head off problems before they start and give you a healthier lawn in general. If the pH is under 6.0, you can add lime, and if it is above 7.0, you can add gardener’s sulphur.

If you are looking for an all around good lawn and have plenty of time on your hands, consider the topsoil. Dig a spade into your ground at various points and find out how deep your layer of topsoil is. You’ll find that four inches is about the minimum you need for a passable lawn, while eight inches or more will give you good, strong growth above it.

Finally, remember that you should always use an organic fertilizer when your garden needs a little bit of help, especially in the fall and the spring, and that you should only water when your grass is showing some signs of drought. When you water, water deeply, and take the time to make sure that everything gets a good soaking.

As you can see, taking care of lawn can be still be eco-friendly, so see how you can get started!

Looking At Natural Pest Control For Your Organic Garden

February 17, 2009 by  
Filed under Featured, Organic Pest Control

As every gardener knows, insect pests are part and parcel of being a gardener, and that you have many different ways of dealing with them. When you are considering an organic garden, you already know that you should not use chemical pesticides, but the truth is, you really don’t need them! There are plenty of different solutions for the various pest problems that you might face, and you’ll find that with just a little bit of information under your belt that you will be able to deal with your pest problem quite easily and handily.

The first thing to keep in mind is that you can make your garden much more immune to pests simply by starting off with a good gardening structure. For instance, make sure that you rotate your plants, which will make the pests of one year completely obsolete the next. Remember that healthy soil will encourage nematodes, which will work well against soil bests, and that the use of compost and mulching can also keep pests off. Remember that plants that are native to your area will always be tougher in the face of natural pests, and that having a wide variety of plants will encourage less pests as well, due to the fact that the plants will “protect” each other.

When considering natural pest control, make it your business to encourage the natural predators of your pests. For instance, ladybugs, birds, moss, certain fungi and ground beetles are all beneficial to a garden, and you’ll find that keeping a natural garden will encourage them as well. Check at your local garden shop for any recommendations, or anything that you can do to encourage these animals and plants to help you out.

Regular garden maintenance will also help you keep the pests down. Whenever you see any small, weak or dying plants, pull them out. They may be infected, and even if they are not, they will provide a place for pests to nest. Pull the plant out and keep it from the rest of your garden. Similarly, keep your garden clear of debris, use clan mulch and weed regularly. Doing this can help with your water irrigation and keep your garden growing healthily as well.

You’ll find that natural pest control is quite easy once you learn about the pests that are troubling you. Remember that every problem has a natural solution your garden, so look around for the solutions that you need!

What You Need To Know About Natural Fertilizers

February 17, 2009 by  
Filed under Organic Gardening News

When you want to make sure that your yard and garden look great, you’ll find that one thing that you need to consider is natural fertilizers. Gardens do a great deal better with just a little bit of help, and you’ll find that you can easily do so without resorting to chemical additives of artificial fertilizers. You’ll find that natural fertilizers are a great way to add nutrients to the soil and to make sure that your produce look great!

When considering natural fertilizers or making your own, you’ll find that they should always contain three things. Nitrogen is meant to promote the growth of better foliage, while phosphates are in place to ensure good root development. Potassium is good for the overall health of the plant. You’ll find that when you buy commercial fertilizers that they will have these three ingredients, but they will get them in ways that are harmful to the environment.

When you are considering natural fertilizers, remember that compost is a great place to start. If you don’t have a compost pile, now is a great time to start, and you’ll find that you can encourage healthy bacteria in your garden as well as increase the production of healthy nitrogen. Spreading compost on your plants is a good way to kick off your organic gardening.

You’ll also find that a mix of grass clippings, mulch and seaweed can go a long way in your garden as well. If you live near a beach, you can collect seaweed for your garden, and after it is rinsed out, you can put it directly on the soil. Grass clippings can be applied to the garden beds, but remember not to apply it too liberally, as too much grass decomposition will make the soil acidic through the creation of ammonia

Another great natural fertilizer is animal manure. Remember that the best ones to use are horse, chicken or cow manure, and that when you dig it into the soil, it will help conserve nitrogen. Don’t just spread it on the soil, as most of the nutritional potential will be washed away very easily. When using manure, remember that fresh manure should be kept away from young plants, to prevent the tender roots from being burned.

Take a look around, and you’ll be sure to find plenty of natural fertilizer options all around you. You’ll find that with just a little bit of work, you can really make your garden look great without a single chemical additive!

The Many Benefits of Composting!

February 17, 2009 by  
Filed under Organic Fertillzers, Organic Gardening Tips

If you are someone who is looking for a chance to garden more responsibly as well as the opportunity to grow stunning produce, you’ll find that composting is something that you need to consider! Composting is essentially the use of decomposed organic matter to fertilized the soil, and you’ll find that this is something that is easy to add to a garden of any size. While you can of course have a compost pile in the garden, you can also have a smaller compost bin in the garage or sealed under the sink for a smaller garden. You’ll find that composting has many benefits, both to your own garden and that of the world at large.

Composting is a natural solution that looks to fight back against the problem of landfills. When so much waste can be returned to the soil and go on to enrich it, the act of putting organic matter in a landfill can be considered quite wasteful.

You’ll also find that when you compost, you are adding something back to the soil. When organic matter breaks down, it will release valuable nutrients and bacteria back into the soil. In this way, you can greatly enrich your gardening, landscaping and any plant life that you are looking to nurture. Another further benefit is that the compost is entirely natural and there are no further chemical consequences, the way there would be if a chemical or artificial fertilizer is used. When you add compost to the soil, you are improving the soil’s structure and fertility; you will also find that you can increase it’s ability to hold water.

You should also keep in mind the fact that composting is a process that puts you squarely in the thick of things when it comes to the cycle of the earth and land. With composting, you can realize that the act of conservation and ecological stewardship is something that is very hands on, and that you are very much a part of it. This is an excellent lesson for children, especially, to learn, and you’ll find that they will have a significantly improved understanding of their place in the world when they can see this process up close.

Composting is an important step for gardeners to make, and once you have your composting project started, you’ll find that there are many, many reasons to keep it going. Take the time to see what composting can do for you, and you’ll find out first hand why so many people have turned to this natural alternative.

Green Landscaping For You!

February 17, 2009 by  
Filed under Featured

Just because you are interested in making sure that you make a positive benefit on the earth rather than a negative one doesn’t mean that your yard has to look sloppy! More and more people are discovering the joys of green landscaping, and if you are interested in a wonderfully sharp and fully natural look for your yard, you will want to take a look and see what green landscaping can do for you. Green landscaping is essentially landscaping that look at things like water conservation, the use of all natural resources and the selection of appropriate plants to beautify a piece of land while still making it work with the surrounding ecosystem. If this sounds complicated, keep in mind that it’s really not, and that there are many things that you can try at home an on your own.

For instance, if you are planning on redoing the landscaping of your yard, consider the placement of deciduous and evergreen trees. If you plant deciduous on the south and east sides of your home, you’ll be able to get shade during the summer while still keeping the sun’s heat and warmth during the winter, because the leaves will not bar the way of the light. Evergreens that have been planted in the north and the west are particularly perfect for protecting your home from harsh winds during the cold months.

You may also want to consider the use of recycled materials for your green landscaping project. You’ll find that soil amendments and mulch fall under this category, and that with wood becoming more and more expensive and increasingly depleted to boot that you will want to consider making sure you can recycled plastic bender board. Similarly, you can recycle broken up concrete into great flagstones, and recycled brick for paths and patios.

When considering green landscaping, keep in mind the fact that you should also consider the water irrigation concerns. When you are deciding to put in a garden, think about how the water will flow and how you can best take advantage of the water that is around. Consider drip-irrigation and the use of drought resistant plants, which can make sure that your deep watering needs are kept to a minimum.

When you are considering getting involved with green landscaping, remember that there are many options open to you, so see what will beautify your home as well as protect the earth that it sits on!

Eco Friendly Mowers and What You Need To Know

February 17, 2009 by  
Filed under Organic Gardening News

So summertime has rolled around again, and with it comes the need for cutting your lawn. One place that many people are looking to cut back on environmental problems, though, is fossil fuel emissions and it turns out that the traditional gas powered powers are among the heaviest offenders. A recent Swedish study declared that cutting your lawn for an hour with a gas powered mower was as damaging to the environment as a 100 mile car trip, so in light of that, you might be looking for alternatives. When you are looking to get away from a gas powered mower, take a look at the options that are open to you.

When you are considering a very eco-conscious but still workable solution for cutting the lawn, consider an electric mower. These models are actually very reasonably priced, and can be used as long as you have cord that will run between the mower and a power outlet. You’ll find that they are most efficient for small lawns though you should keep in mind that their efficiency for energy over all depends on the practices of the nearby power plant.

If you have more cash to spend, consider a solar powered mower. These are wonderfully convenient and in addition will actually mow your lawn itself; it will wander around the lawn, using its motion sensors to avoid cutting anything but grass. This is the ultimate in convenience plus environmental friendliness, but they have to be ordered directly from Sweden.

For a more affordable mix of the two solutions above, consider getting a Solar Powered Mulching Mower, produced by Gaiam. These mowers use a mix of electrical and solar power and can be charged just by being plugged into an outlet.

Finally, you’ll find that the most eco-friendly option by far is to take a look at the old-fashioned push mowers. You’ll find that these human-powered reel mowers are great for the environment, can give you a healthy amount of exercise and can be found virtually everywhere. You’ll find that these mowers are just as efficient as the mowers listed above, and at the end of the day, they are not much more time consuming.

If you are looking for a way to cut back on the fossil fuel emissions that you are putting out, consider what to do about your lawn and how you cut your grass. You’ll find that looking at this is an important way to see how you fit into things, environmentally speaking.

5 Ways to Protect Your Organic Garden From Pests

If you are familiar with gardening, or even if you aren’t, you already know that pests can destroy a season’s worth of work if left unchecked. While you might be at a bit of a loss when it comes to making sure that your stays healthy while not using chemical products, you’ll find that with a little bit of research, nothing could be easier! Check out a few of the great ways to protect your garden from pests while still keeping organic.

1.Garlic
Garlic is great for a number of different pests, and it’s easy to use, as well. All you need to do is to start with 3 ounces of finely chopped garlic and mix it with two teaspoons of mineral oil. After a 24 hour soak, you can add it to one pint of water and ¼ n ounce of dish soap. This is a great all-purpose insect spray, and when you go to use it, all you need to do is to take about tablespoon of this mixture and mix it with a pint of water. Test the mixture on some lower leaves to make sure that you have not made it strong, but this can be a great way to fight really persistent pests.

2.Weed Regularly
We already know that weeds can choke out the desirable plants, but keep in mind that they can also play host to a number of undesirable pests as well! Make sure that your rows stay clear of weeds and also of debris, where insects can nest. When you have finished the weeding, make sure that you put the refuse at some distance away from your garden, to make sure that the pests that you have cleared out don’t return.

3.Milk
Milk is good for you, and great for your garden. When you mix one part milk to nine parts water, you can spray the mixture every week or so to prevent things like powdery mildew. Use it whenever you see black spots on your vegetables or your roses.

4.Composite Flowers
Not only will these flowers be a great and colorful addition to your garden, you’ll find that they’ll attract the useful insects as well. Ladybugs and lacewings are both attracted to these flowers and you’ll find that they can help reduce pests a great deal. For some great composite flowers to add, look at yarrow, chicory, chrysanthemums ad dahlias.

5.Newspapers and Cardboard
Use newspapers and cardboard layered on top of your weeds to suffocate them by keeping them away from the light and the water. If you do this in the fall, your garden will have a great weed-free start in the spring.