Hobbies don’t have to be very energetic. They can be very relaxing, yet be enough to keep you very busy. The perfect example of this kind of hobby is organic gardening. The main goal is growing natural, pesticide-free food for your own personal use. You can relax with this hobby too if you follow the tips below.
Reduce the need for pesticides in your garden by planting native crops. Native plants will have a better resistance against the bugs and bacteria of your area, and will be better equipped to compete with native weeds. Native plants will attract beneficial native insects, such as ladybugs, which can naturally control pest problems without the need for chemicals.
Pine can make a great mulch. Some plants have a naturally high acidic level, and therefore like acidic soil. If that’s the case, the easiest thing to do is use pine needles for beds. Spread a few inches of pine needles on your organic beds so that it will put the acid into your soil.
Plant ornamental, edible plants as part of your regular yard landscaping. Good plants to start with include rosemary, thyme varieties, sages, oregano and basil. These all look great mixed with perennials, and they will supply you with enough that you won’t need to purchase them anymore – herbs are expensive at the supermarket.
Before you begin planting in your garden, it’s a good idea to test your soil’s acidity first. Home testing kits are readily available. Your soil should have a pH around 6.5 for most vegetables. If the pH is too low, you can boost it by spreading lime. If it’s too high, you can use powdered sulfur.
When maintaining an organic garden, be sure to always wind up your hoses. Dragging and storing a hose that is not wound up can take a lot of time away from you. Try using stationary or portable hose reels to wind up your hoses and to save you some time.
The best and most natural way to fertilize an organic garden is with compost. Compost can be made from anything that was once alive. Don’t discount the value of your kitchen waste, leaves, grass clippings or anything else that was once alive. By composting it all, you will give invaluable life to your organic garden.
Variety makes for a better compost pile. By using a wide variety of materials in your compost pile, you are providing a better pH balance, more nutrients and microbial organisms. Shred materials when possible, as smaller particles decompose much faster, but having a few larger materials in there helps to improve the aeration. For the best results, don’t add any more materials once the composting process has begun.
Although there are many organic weed killers available on the market, it is often best and a real money saver to pull weeds by hand. If you keep up with it regularly, you can easily pull weeds before their roots are established. Wear gloves and be sure to pull out both the foliage and roots.
If you notice dry decay at the blossom end of your fruiting vegetables, blossom end rot could be to blame. This is caused by a lack of calcium in your soil. To remedy the rot organically, use eggshells. Crush three or four eggshells and bury them in the soil around the affected plant.
To keep dirt from getting stuck in the leaves of lettuce and other leafy vegetables, use mulch. When the plants appear, spread an inch or two of mulch around the base of the plants. This will prevent dirt from getting into the plant and also help prevent pesky weeds. Just be sure that the mulch is organic and untreated by pesticides.
To make your organic gardening venture as environmentally friendly as it is healthy, consider making your own mulch. To make your own mulch, all you need is a soil sample combined with your leftover food products. You can buy a mulcher or manually mulch your waste simply by turning it over every few days.
Like so many things in life a good organic garden benefits greatly from advanced planning. The savvy gardener develops an all-encompassing plan for his or her garden before the first seed is planted. Good garden planning takes into account not only the initial plantings, but the subsequent changes that need to be made as the growing season wears on.
Short, low-lying weeds can be a headache in any organic garden. The best tactic for dealing with such intruders is to use a spade to cut them out at root level and bury them entirely under fresh soil. Dense, crawling weeds are too hard to pick out individually, but fortunately they are easily handled in bulk.
There are different kinds of hobbies for different kinds of people. As you have read, they don’t all involve being very active. There are hobbies that everyone can relax with and enjoy, like the hobby known as organic gardening. With the above tips in mind, you can reap its delicious benefits too.