“Organic” in gardening is a term used to describe the use of organic matter to improve the soil. These organic substances are extracted from compost and manure. This is usually used in a organic garden†
Organic gardening refers to the exclusive use of natural products such as compost, animal manure, etc., for gardening and without the use of synthetic products such as chemical fertilizers and pesticides.
The use of organic gardening dates back to when man first arrived on Earth. Gardening/farming was done with natural products, and organic gardening was the main form of gardening at the time, this is because inorganic products were not known.
After a while, fertilizers and pesticides were introduced and have been used ever since.
Organic gardening was popularized by J. I Rodales according to Wikipedia, “He was known as a supporter of organic and sustainable agriculture.†
The approach to organic gardening is to use natural pesticides like pyrethrin and rotenone, which are natural sources of additional nutrients and build up organic matter in the soil.
Methods used in organic gardening
1. Crop rotation
Crop rotation is the successive planting of different crops on the same land. Crop rotation is one of the methods used in organic gardening because it naturally replenishes the soil, it is also a way to control weeds in this land and it limits insects.
2. Companion planting
It is the act of growing plants together for the benefits they provide to each other and to the soil. Planting in company makes plants healthy, some plants provide shade for each other, especially tall plants like corn. It fights weeds, some plants serve as an insect repellent for other plants, for example aromatic herbs, onions.
3. Biological pest control
It is a method using natural and biological means to control pests, weeds and plant diseases. There are several ways to fight pests naturally. Examples include cultivation of catch crops, use of light traps for moths, predation, naturally prepared pesticides i.e. use of ginger, tobacco, cold, etc.
This can be described as covering the ground with organic materials such as leaves, sawdust, shredded bark, compost, etc. This protects the soil from the sun or wind, which helps the soil retain its moisture. Mulch also protects the soil from erosion and increases soil fertility.
5. Ground cover
Some plants are not grown for harvesting purposes, but for use as beneficiaries of the soil. They improve soil stability, reduce erosion, increase moisture content, improve soil health, and provide many other nutrients to the soil. Some ground covers include rye, buckwheat, clover, peas, bean varieties, etc.
According to Wikipedia “Compost is organic matter that has been broken down into simpler organic or inorganic matter in a process called composting. It simply means that compost is organic material that provides natural nutrients to the soil for better plant growth. They also provide the right amount of moisture and trap air in the soil. Using compost is a way to reduce the use of fertilizers and pesticides, they also reduce pests and diseases.
Benefits of organic gardening
- Healthy soil: organic gardening methods i.e. ground covers, organic fertilizers, intercropping, crop rotation and more increase soil structure and replenish/supply nutrients to the soil . It also prevents erosion and reduces the amount of nutrients lost from the soil. They become healthy and this results in a healthy plant.
- HEALTHY AND TASTING FOODS: Healthy, chemical-free soil automatically produces better-tasting vegetables, foods, and fruits, while soil full of chemical fertilizers and pesticides produces the opposite, as pesticides and fertilizers alter the taste of plants. and can poison. with plants With organic gardening, you can be sure that your food is healthy, chemical-free and tastes better.
- Reduce costs: Synthetic fertilizers and chemical pesticides are quite expensive compared to using organic products. With organic gardening, almost everything you need is available on your farm/garden or provided by nature and you don’t have to spend any money.
- Economic benefits: Recently, the demand for organic products is increasing, people are starting to see the need to consume organic food. Organic foods are mainly imported into the urban agglomerations of the country, which makes them more expensive. Organic gardening in your area will provide food for many people at an affordable price.
There are many benefits of using organic produce for your farm, but they just don’t happen, organic gardening takes time and work, a bit more than the normal type of gardening.
You may also lose part of the harvest or have a reduction in your harvest. These are all normal intentions of an organic garden.