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Planning an Organic Garden

Starting an organic garden allows you to grow your own food and flowers with little to no pesticides – which many gardeners choose to do for both health and environmental benefits. Purchasing organic produce at the store can be quite expensive, so growing your own can be cost effective, healthy, and educational! Whether you wish to start small or plant many acres, Park’s collection of organic seed and fertilizers can help you achieve organic gardening success.

Plant Your Organic Garden In The Best Spot
To achieve the best results from your organic garden, you will want to choose a spot with proper sunlight and prepared soil. Healthy soil creates healthy plants!

Sunlight
You will need bright morning sunlight away from large, over hanging trees (they also love to soak up valuable moisture). Morning sun will also away the night's dew in more humid areas.

Drainage and Watering
Your garden area needs to have have good drainage. The best time to water your garden is during the early morning hours, this allows the plant to soak up the moisture before it is dried by the sun.

Use Impeccable Soil
Organic White SquashPlanting Medium
Start with a clean, disease free planting medium. When you are growing an organic garden, you need to have complete control over what goes into your soil. Make sure you have cultivated every bit of weed and do all you can to prevent fungal growth. Amend with peat or composted manure to get a nice rich loam that will provide your new organic garden with a well draining, nutrient rich home.

Use Earthworms
Earth worms are the organic gardeners best friend. They fix the two major deficiencies that usually affect your garden: lack of nutrients and lack of oxygen. They feed the plants and promote strong growth, keeping the soil full of all of the same elements as artificial fertilizers, but they are cheaper and safer.

Don't Pack Down or Trample Your Garden
Do not compact the soil. Your plants need oxygen to breathe just like we do--the roots need air. Don't walk on the soil in your garden. Create rows between your plants that allows you to reach them easily without treading on them.

Use Raised Bed Gardens
Raised bed gardens are a great way to have complete control over your soil. The soil will be 100% your own recipe, and it lowers the chance of uninvited creatures or weeds. Building a raised bed is quite easy - there are even kits available.

Choose Plants Wisely
Choose your plants well. Know your USDA hardiness zone and research plants before you buy seeds. Many varieties have tolerances that would be a great match for your garden. Many varieties resist insects and fungus--some are tolerant to drought or frost. This kind of knowledge helps to ensure a very successful organic garden.

Two Vital Tips for Ongoing Organic Care
Always rotate
Rotate as often as every other year if possible. Planting the same plants in the same spot year after year will drain your soil of all of its nutrients. Rotating will save you some work through the growing season, and keep your soil healthy for future planting.

Mix it up
Do not group like varieties too tightly. Your parasites and grazers will capitalize on this. You want to make it as difficult as possible to feed on your garden.

Back to The Park Gardener's Handbook