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Bob's Guide to Organic Gardening

Bob is a permaculture designer, a garden writer and his ebook From My Garden is widely available.

Organic, Naturally

Make mine local and organic, that is a great motto that we need to see and hear more often. Organic means that no harmful unnatural ingredients have been used in the production of the food we eat or any product we use for that matter.

Why would anyone want to eat a hamburger or a vegetable pizza that was made with anything but organic ingredients? Now, often the choices we have in our stores is limited to a few organic items, usually expensive, and often from far away so that getting organically and locally grown food is difficult or costly, both economically and environmentally.

However, you can grow your own; even if you have a limited space you can at least grow some of your own food the natural way. It is expensive for a grower to obtain an organic certification

While I do not need my foods to be certified organic, I do need them to be grown naturally. By nturally I mean without synthetics,

The seeds or seedlings used must be organic. The seed, which is both the beginning and the ending of the growing process, allows you to participate directly in Life’s cycle. You start the garden by sowing the seeds you choose and nurturing them into adulthood

I use either seeds I have saved myself or heritage seeds that I have purchased or traded for with other gardeners. This means the seed I am using will breed true to the parent, in other words, if I plant a seed from a heritage cherry tomato the plant I get is a heritage cherry tomato, not a surprise.

1st Cuke From Last Summer's Garden

Bob Ewing photo, first cuke from organic raised bed garden

Bob Ewing photo, first cuke from organic raised bed garden

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Seed and Soil

The seed must be planted in organic soil which means soil that has not been treated with artificial fertilizers, herbicides or pesticides, for example. When you are growing for yourself, you do not need to think about being certified organic in order to produce organic plants. As long as you refrain from introducing any artificial or unnatural elements into the garden you are gardening organically.

An organic gardener builds soil if you remember this, then you are well on your way to creating a healthy and thriving organic garden. Healthy soil leads to healthy plants. The most effective way to build soil is to add organic material to the garden bed or tot eh container.

The best way to add organic material to the garden is to use compost and if you can making your own compost allows you to convert vegetable scraps, leaves and grass clippings, for example, into humus which your garden will thank you for by producing great tomatoes and whatever else you choose to plant.

Organic gardeners work with nature and understand that putting a plant where it gets the sunlight it needs is essential. They know they do not garden alone and that their garden comes to live and thrive thanks to the assistance from predators such as spiders, aphids, and many other above ground helpers. Under the earth, the earthworm aerates the soil so the roots can breath and the plants grow. Also below the soil there are millions of ever smaller beings hard at work and the results of their labour are a beautiful and bountiful garden.

When you introduce toxic chemicals into the garden you kill all these helpers, why would anyone want to do that?

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Bob Ewing (author) from New Brunswick on February 20, 2010:

Happy gardening, more will indeed come, thanks for dropping by.

billyaustindillon on February 20, 2010:

Thanks for sharing - organic is certainly the way to go - we do cucs, peppers, tomatoes, ochre, herbs, beans, sweet potato and arugula - I look forward to more Bob

Bob Ewing (author) from New Brunswick on February 20, 2010:

You are welcome and thank you for dropping by.

Sandra Mireles from Texas on February 20, 2010:

Good hub. I always look forward to your work. Enjoyable and informative. Thanks.

Bob Ewing (author) from New Brunswick on February 19, 2010:

Thanks for dropping by.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on February 19, 2010:

I would love to have an organic garden. Good hub.

Bob Ewing (author) from New Brunswick on February 19, 2010:

slugs? Thanks for dropping by

Hello, hello, from London, UK on February 19, 2010:

I don't the once you described but what about slups? Any cure for that? Thank you for a lovely read of my favourite subject.

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