10 Quick Tips for the Organic Gardener
1. If your growing onions specifically for cooking, add some rock sulfur to your beds! adding sulfur makes your onions hotter and much more potent!
2. If you are having problems getting bigger potatoes, try lowering the ph. potatoes need very acidic soils to grow well. try 4.5 - 5.0 !!!!! that is the optimal range for taters. and also, add lots of phosphorus and potassium to aid in healthy root formation.
3. Adding leaves to garden beds will insulate them during the winter and prevent them from freezing over! doing this can give you a head start next spring with spring planting!
4. When trying to de-skin tomatoes, simply cut off the stem end, flip the tomato around and cut a X at the flower end of the tomato, then drop in boiling water for 30 second, then drop in a tub of cold water. you will find the skin peels off like a sock!
5. Want to NEVER fertilize your lawn again, but have the greenest lawn around? When creating a new lawn, Mix in about 1/4 cup of clover seed to every 5 pounds of grass seed OR for established lawns, spread 1 pound of clover seed over 1000 square feet of lawn. The clover is a legume, and will feed the grass, keep it green, and provide food for bees if left long enough!
6. Using coffee grounds will add a great nitrogen source, and contrary to belief will not add any acidity to your soil since the acid is transferred to the coffee you drank.
7. Use sand to loosen soil. Sand will help to achieve that soft soil exture you are looking for in the garden. It is also extremely inexpensive.
8. Plant your plants in a valley. Traditional crop planting tell you to plant on the top of a burm, however when planting, make sure to plant in a dip, valley, or any low lying hole. This will conserve water up to 50% as well as conserve fertilizing needs since most water and fertilizer is lost through runoff.
9. Amend the year before. If you want better results, amend your soil in the fall to allow the soil to loosen and rest before planting. This will prove to have better soil health than if you were to amend at planting time.
10. support local beneficial insects. Ladybugs and birds are a very helpful asset to any organic garden. Make sure to plant plants like marigolds that attract ladybugs, and keep a thistle feeder or bird bath near the garden. Birds will see critters and eat them before you could even notice the bug was there.