Pod 4
Organic Gardening


Organic gardening is gardening without the use of pesticides. Rather than using pesticides, which contain many chemicals that can be harmful to the environment and even humans, natural forms of pest control are used.

Organic gardening has many benefits over gardening with pesticides. While pesticides are the most effective way of killing pests, the chemicals from them can do a lot of damage beyond killing pests. Pesticides are often delivered to crops by planes which spray the pesticides down on the plants. Using this method, some of the chemicals from the pesticides can end up in the air. Additionally, excess chemicals can pollute water that is near farms in the form of run off. Another issue with pesticides is that if too much is used or if food is not cleaned off properly, they can be harmful to humans as well. Organic gardening does not use any pesticides so none of these issues are relevent when it comes to organic gardening.


Despite being better for the environment and better for humans overall, organic gardening does have some disadvantages, as well as many challenges. Pesticides sometimes contain certain types of growth hormones, which allow food grown with them to grow very large. Since organic fruits and vegetables do not get any of these growth hormones, they are often considerably smaller than those fruits and veggies that do. Also, an organic garden takes a lot more effort to maintain than a garden using pesticides does, and the price of organic produce at the grocery store certainly reflects this! Organic gardening is very challenging, since no man-made chemicals can be used to kill bugs and other pests. Only all-natural methods of pest control can be used, and these methods are not nearly as effective as chemicals are. Organic farmers must work diligently to maintain their gardens and keep all forms of pests out.

To start an organic garden of your own will take a lot of time and effort! There are many steps involved in creating an organic garden, and here is a step-by-step guide...

1. Plan smart - When starting your organic garden, you have to be smart about planning where to put it, and what kinds of plants to put in it. You have to be sure to make your garden the right size for your yard, and you must be prepared to lose yard space due to your garden. Additionally, if young children or pets will be around your garden, you should avoid planting flowers that are poisonous. Any plants you put in your organic garden should be well suited for the environment of the area you live in. This includes proper climate, soil, and sunlight.

2. Build up soil before you plant anything - Putting some soil into the place where your organic garden will be before planting anything is much easier than trying to move soil around a bunch of plants! So save yourself some time and labor and put down a few bags of soil in your seedbed before you plant anything. You should also be aware that some types of soil have chemical additives in them. Make sure you pick a soil that is free of any synthetic chemicals so that your garden can be truly organic!

3. Plant your garden! - When you finally are ready to start putting plants in your garden, you should think about where to place things first. Putting plants with similar water, nutrient, and sunlight needs in "clusters" will make it much easier to care for them. You can also practice "companion planting", by placing plants that can work with each other close to one another. Also be sure to plant plenty of plants that attract beneficial insects. Some of these plants include baby blue eyes, candy tuft, evening primrose and sweet alyssum.

4. Care for your garden! - After you've planted your organic garden, you will, obviously, have to start caring for it! Since you cannot use any type of chemical pesticides, keeping away harmful bugs can be tough. There are many natural ways of keeping harmful bugs away, however. At the bottom of the page there are links to websites about organic gardening, which include ways of keeping bugs out of your garden naturally. One of these sites even has natural pesticides available for purchase right there on the web page! In addition to keeping bugs away, you will also have to, obviously, keep your plants watered! Knowing the water needs of all the plants in your garden will make it much easier for you to know exactly how much and how often to water your garden. By knowing all the needs of all of your plants, and by having the determination to fulfill all these needs, your organic garden will be able to flourish!

Organic Products
"Organic" doesn't have to be used to describe only food that has been grown without pesticides. Many other kinds of products that we use in our daily lives can be organic as well! Just about anything, from shirts to stuffed animals, soap to furniture, bedding to hand lotion, can be organic. Buying organic products has many of the same benefits and disadvantages of buying organic food.

You should we alert when buying organic cosmetics and body care products, however, as many of these products are wrongly labled and are not actually organic. The USDA National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) has issued a recomendation to the USDA National Organic Program (NOP) urging that any personal care product labeled as "organic" is backed up by third-party certification.

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Sources - http://www.organicgardeningguru.com/