Vegetable Gardening

Vegetable gardening has lately become just as popular as going to the grocery store fore produce.  Vegetable gardening can produce vegetable that are usually cheaper than store bought, and vegetables from a home vegetable garden definitely taste better by far.  Vegetable gardening is no different than growing herbs or flowers and if the proper steps are taken and the plants are give the proper care they will flourish and produce very tasty vegetables.

First you must decide what size of garden you wish to plant and then select a place for it; somewhere that has good drainage, good air flow, and good, deep soil.  It also needs to be able to get as much sunlight as possible.  Because vegetable gardens have such tasty rewards, many animals, such as dogs, rabbits, deer, and many others will try and get to your veggies.  One way to prevent this is to surround your garden with a fence, or put out a trap to catch mice, moles, and other animals.

Before planting, the soil must be properly prepared.  Good soil for vegetable gardening is achieved by cultivation and the application of organic materials.  The soil must be tilled (plowed) to control weeds and mix mulch into the soil.  If you have a small garden, spading could be a better bet than plowing.  Mulching is also a vital part of soil preparation.  Organic matter added to the soil releases nitrogen, minerals, and other nutrients plants need to thrive.  The most popular and best type of mulch you can use is compost.

While the kind and amount of fertilizer used depends on the soil and types of plants, there are some plants that have specific needs; leafy plants, like cabbage, spinach, and lettuce usually grow better with more nitrogen, while root crops like potatoes, beets, turnips, and carrots require more potash.  Tomatoes and beans use less fertilizer, while plants like onions, celery, and potatoes need a larger amount.

One thing that is vitally important in vegetable gardening is the garden arrangement.  There is no single plan that will work for every garden due to varying conditions.  One popular way to arrange a vegetable garden is to plant vegetables needing only limited space together, such as radishes, lettuce, beets, and spinach, and those that require more room together, such as corn, pumpkins, and potatoes.  Try and plant tall growing plants towards the back of the garden and shorter ones in the front so that their sunlight does not get blocked.

When you are finally ready to begin planting your vegetable garden, make sure and plant at the right time of year.  If you are dying to get an early start, you may want begin your garden inside in a hotbed and then transplant when the weather permits.  After you are finished planting, make sure your vegetables receive the appropriate amount of water, which depends on the type of plant.  Most plants will need the equivalent to about an inch of water per week.

By

Expert Author Julie Williams

Beans – both fresh and dried green beans are rich in the B vitamins and potassium.  They may have even more antioxidants than blueberries and as much cholesterol-lowering fiber as oats (another super-food).  They also are an excellent source of lean protein.

Climbing beans originate from the warm / temperate to tropical regions of the Americas.  There are 36 species, some being annual and some perennial.

Most grow on twining climbing plants with bright green tri-foliate leaves.  There are many bush varieties available now that don’t require staking. Flowers can be purple, red, white or yellow, followed by round, long or flat seed pods.

Some plants are grown for the beans inside the pods, and others are eaten pods and all.

Beans will do best with a long, warm to hot growing season. They should be grown in full sun and need ample amounts of water to grow vigorously. Beans will thrive in a light, well-drained soil that is rich in humus (well rotted compost).

Wait until the last frost and the ground has warmed before planting seed in it’s permanent position, sowing from mid-spring to early summer.

Watch for snails and slugs in the early growing period.

Beans are heavy feeders, so make sure to add compost at the time of planting and give additional feeds of organic fertilizer every three to four weeks. They will take between 60 and 90 days to mature – depending on what variety you are growing.

Select the healthiest looking plant and let the beans mature and dry on the vine to save the seed for next spring.

*My own personal tip is to keep picking your beans just a tiny bit before mature. That way you’ll enjoy tender baby beans and your plants will keep producing more beans so you’ll end up with a higher yield. *

Beans are such easy plants to grow. They are a great plant to encourage your kids or grandkids into the garden. They taste great fresh off the vine too.

To make sure you have a long supply of fresh, health promoting beans, plant a succession of plants and varieties to last you well into autumn (fall).

Beans also enrich the soil with nitrogen. They will grow quite happily with companions of cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, corn, cucumbers, squash, strawberries (with Bush Beans), and tomatoes, but should not be grown with any of the onion family or fennel.

Hi, I am an avid organic gardener and am known by my friends as the recycling queen. I live on a small country property in South Australia.
It is my mission to encourage as many people as possible to start organic gardening ( I know you’ll become addicted). This will improve both our individual lives and the wellbeing of our personal and global environments.
Anyone can grow their own healthy food with Organic Gardening. Click here to get started now! Happy Organic Gardening, Healthy Living…
Julie Williams
http://www.1stoporganicgardening.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Julie_Williams

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/685381

By

Expert Author Julie Williams

When you’re just starting out as a newcomer to organic gardening, it’s great to get some successes on the board as soon as possible. I’ve put this list together of my top 10 easiest veggies to grow to encourage you to give it a go. Once you discover how easy it is to grow your own delicious, healthy veggies, you’ll be scratching your head wondering why you didn’t try it sooner.

So start out with these, then when you’ve had success you can research other veggies, fruits and nuts that you want to try. Always bear in mind the climate zone you live in so that you are working with Mother Nature.

Radish

Radishes are probably the easiest vegetable to start out with. They thrive in all climates, all year round in temperate zones. The other great thing about them is that they mature really quickly, from seed to eating in as little as 4 or 5 weeks.

They rarely have any pest or disease problems because they grow so quickly.

If you’ve already enriched the soil with organic compost all you need do is keep the water up to them, especially in hot, dry weather – mulch in summer, but not in winter. If you’ve used plenty of seed you may need to thin them as they get bigger. Pick them as soon as they’re a reasonable size or they become woody.

Silverbeet, Spinach or Swiss Chard

This group of vegetables are related and are also quite easy to grow. Spinach grows best in cooler climates, but silverbeet will grow all year round in temperate zones.

If you’re growing them from seed, soak them overnight. Sow seeds about 30cm (12 inches) apart by placing them on the soil surface and poking with your finger to the depth of about 1cm (half inch). Cover with soil and water in well.

Keep them well watered in hot weather and apply organic fertilizer every month, giving them an occasional feed with an organic liquid fertilizer. Mulching with compost or pea-straw will help conserve water, control weeds and feed your soil.

When the leaves are big enough to use, pick from the outside making sure you leave at least 5 or 6 stalks in the centre for the plant to continue growing.

Capsicum (peppers) and Chillies

These plants are also related to each other and enjoy the same growing conditions. They are a warm climate vegetable and will not set fruit if the overnight temperatures are too low. You can grow both capsicum and chillies in pots.

You may need to stake capsicum for wind protection if you grow them vigorously, as they can reach up to 80cm (30inches).
Sow in seed boxes in spring. When your seedlings have reached 15cm (6inches), transplant them into beds prepared with compost at about 50cm (20inches) apart.

Fertilize with organic pellets every 4 or 5 weeks when they start to flower. Make sure you don’t over do it, or you will end up with very healthy plants with lots of leaves, but very little fruit.

You can harvest capsicum at any time, but if you wait for the fruit to turn red (they all start out green) they have much higher amounts of vitamin C.
Leave chillies on the plant to mature, then they can be harvested and used fresh. If you want to dry some just leave them in a dark, dry, airy place for several weeks. They will store well in glass jars for many years. Remember never to touch your eyes after handling chillies as it is very painful. Wash your hands thoroughly.

Cherry Tomatoes

Tomatoes will grow in most soils and all but the coldest climates. And cherry tomatoes are the easiest to grow, so they suit new gardeners perfectly. They will even grow well as tub specimens. It’s not essential to stake them, provided you don’t mind them sprawling around the place a bit.

They are frost tender, so you can start them indoors if your area has late frosts. When your seedlings get to 15 – 20cm (6-8inches), transplant them into their permanent position, whether it be tub or ground. If you are going to stake them, get your stakes in first so you don’t damage their young root system. Tomatoes (unlike most plants) actually benefit from being planted deeper than they were in the seedling box. You can even bury the bottom leaves. This actually benefits the plant as they grow roots right up to the soil surface, giving it more stability and accessibility to water and nutrients.
If growing them in the ground, give them at least 50cm (20inches) spacing.
Deep water you plants regularly and give a thick layer of mulch.

Providing you’re planting your tomatoes in a compost-rich soil, you will only need to liquid fertilize when fruiting starts. Use a good organic liquid manure such as Seasol or Maxicrop and use as a foliar spray.

Pick your tomatoes as they ripen, to encourage more fruit.

Zucchini

You will find zucchini one of the easiest vegetables to grow, with amazing yields. They just keep giving! Zucchini are part of the cucumber / melon / pumpkin family and enjoy a warm growing season.

Sow 2 or 3 seeds directly into a mound of richly composted soil in late spring, or after frosts are over. You can train zucchini to grow up a trellis or fence, which can help prevent powdery mildew. When the seedlings are about 10cm (4inches) tall, gently pull out all but the strongest plant.

You’ll need about 3 or 4 mounds (plants) to feed a family of 4 – 6. Give them plenty of water and add organic fertilizer every 4 weeks or so. When the zucchini reach between 15 and 20 cm (6-8inches) it’s time to pick them. They can grow really quickly – literally overnight – so keep a vigilant eye on them otherwise you’ll end up with inedible veggies. You also want to pick them as they’re ready to keep the yields high.

Butternut Pumpkins

Pumpkins are known for being easy to grow. Belonging to the same family as zucchini, they grow in similar conditions. Again plant seeds in mounds and keep the strongest seedling. Have your mounds about a metre (yard) apart.

Mulch around the mound and keep the water up to them in really hot and dry weather. Feed every 3 weeks with well rotten manure or mature compost.

Here’s where the difference comes in. You need to leave pumpkins on the vine to fully mature. Wait until the vines have died off before harvesting (somewhere between 14 & 20 weeks). Before any chance of frost, harvest by cutting the stems at least 5cm (2inches) from the pumpkin.

Store in a dry place until needed.

Leeks and Spring Onions

Spring onions and leeks are in the Allium family and grow in very similar conditions. You can grow in seed raising mix or seed directly where they are to grow. If you grow seeds in punnets you can transplant seedlings when they are about 20cm (8inches) tall into well prepared beds (they like a little lime if your soil is acidic), about 20cm apart.

Some people like to “blanch” the stems of leeks to keep them white, but I don’t bother. All you really need to do for leeks and spring onions is give them plenty of water, mulch to keep the weeds down and the soil moist and apply organic fertilizer every few weeks.

Harvest when leeks are about 2cm (an inch) thick, and spring onions as they become big enough.

Bush or Dwarf Beans

There are many different varieties of beans to choose from. When you’re starting out, go for the bush or dwarf varieties. Grow these beans in warm weather as beans don’t like the cold (unless you’re growing broad beans – different story).

Fertilize along the row where your beans are to grow. Don’t let your bean seeds come into direct contact with your organic fertilizer. Sow your beans directly where they are to grow, into damp soil and avoid watering near them for the first few days. (Don’t soak seeds before planting).

Space rows at 60cm (24inches) and push seeds about 2cm (an inch) into the soil, 10cm (4inches) apart. A row about 3 or 4 metres (yards) long should be enough for a family of 5.

To get a continuous supply of beans, start your next sowing when the first crop has grown their first true leaves. Feed with a liquid organic fertilizer when flowering starts. Remember to harvest your beans while they’re young and tender. They taste better this way, but more importantly, they will give you much better yields.

If you want to save your own seeds, leave the healthiest pods on the bush until they have completely dried. Then pick and pod them, storing in a dry place until next season. Remember to label them.

Peas

Peas will yield heavily if you give them what they need. And they are so delicious! Most varieties love the same conditions. Plant in late summer through to late winter, providing your soil is still workable. Peas like a higher pH than most vegetables, so add some lime into the soil along with mature compost or organic fertilizer.

Provide support by giving them something to climb up. Plant seeds every 5cm (2inches) in a well-drained soil with a sunny position and provide support with small sticks or similar until they reach what you want to grow them on.

Keep down any weeds with good organic mulch. Feed with an organic liquid fertilizer every 3 or 4 weeks. Keep moist in dry weather. Pick regularly to increase yields. Save seed the same as you would beans.

Beetroot

I love growing beetroot. It’s so easy to grow – but let me say this up front; it’s quite different from the tinned supermarket kind.

Plant throughout spring and summer. Add lime to your soil a couple of weeks before planting if your soil is a bit acid. Take your seeds and soak them overnight. Sow directly in the soil, about 1cm (half inch) deep and 30cm (12inches) apart. Cover lightly with soil and water them in. If you want a continuous supply, plant your next crop every 2 – 3 weeks.

At about 4 or 5 weeks, give them a feed with organic liquid fertilizer. You pull your beets when they have grown to about 6 to 8 cm (2 to 3 inches) in diameter, roughly 8 to 10 weeks after planting. Don’t leave them to grow huge as they just become tough and woody.

The young leaves are great in a salad. I love to roast or boil them. They make great juice when added to apple and carrot. I’ve also pickled them and turned them into soup – very unusual, but delicious.

So there you have it – the 10 easiest veggies to grow. If you’re short on garden space you can try growing some of these in pots. You just need to remember to make sure you water when needed.

I wish you every success in getting started gardening organically. If you already garden, have a go at getting your kids (or grandkids) to try growing these veggies themselves. You’ll be surprised at how much more eager they are to eat something they’ve grown themselves.

Hi, I am an avid organic gardener and am known by my friends as the recycling queen. I live on a small country property in South Australia.
It is my mission to encourage as many people as possible to start organic gardening ( I know you’ll become addicted). This will improve both our individual lives and the wellbeing of our personal and global environments.
Anyone can grow their own healthy food with Organic Gardening. Click here to get started now! Happy Organic Gardening, Healthy Living…
Julie Williams
http://www.1stoporganicgardening.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Julie_Williams

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/997226

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Spring is the start of a new growing season. Time to get your garden ready for planting and finish what you couldn’t get done before winter set in.

Soil is the key to having a successful organic garden. The first and most important part in preparing your garden for a new growing season is to know what you are working with. Testing your soil is very important and even more important if your crops the year before didn’t do as well as you would of liked them too.

Once your soil has been tested and you know what you need for soil amendments you can start working the soil in your garden to get ready for planting. Turning your soil over by tilling, plowing or by hand with a spade aerates the soil by exposing new soil to the air, which will activate microbes that are in the soil and other organic matter to help make fertile soil. You want to make sure that your soil is dry enough before you start working with it. If you take a hand full of soil and squeeze it and it stays in the form of a solid ball the soil is to wet. Working wet soil will destroy the texture of the soil. The soil will just be full of clods when it dries and the restoration of the soil can take a lot of work and time that you don’t need to lose out of the growing season. If the area that you plant your garden is usually wet in the spring and dry in the fall you should consider a fall preparation of your garden. This way in the spring there will only be a minimal amount of hand work needed to prepare and start planting.

Now that the soil in your garden has been turned over it’s time to add a layer of compost to feed the soil. A good healthy soil structure is one that will retain moisture, drain well and a lot of nutrient rich humus to feed your plants. Feeding the soil is different that feeding your plants. When you feed the soil the nutrients are there for the plants to feed from as they need too. When fertilizing you are applying nutrients to the soil and the plants will only take what they need when they need it and the rest gets diluted or evaporated away. Having a good nutrient rich soil is the best way to supply the plants in your garden the nutrition they need.

Now that you have your garden prepared and a good healthy nutrient rich soil it is time to start planting. Don’t be afraid to add compost to the hole you dig for your new plants. The plants will love you for it.

A environment friendly and healthy way of gardening. Organic Gardening is away of gardening in harmony with nature. Growing a healthy and productive crop in a way that is healthier for both you and the environment.

John Yazo

[http://www.organicheirloomgardening.com]

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=John_Yazo

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/1983015

Pruning is a Winter-time Activity

Winter is the perfect time to take care of any pruning that needs to be done on your trees and shrubbery, while the plants are either dormant or in a minimal growth mode.  If you haven’t yet taken care of this task, you still have time.

Pruning tips to keep in mind

If you haven’t already figured this out, I try to keep my tips and guidelines as simple as possible.  There is no benefit in making every gardening activity sound daunting or too difficult to attempt.  After all, gardening is supposed to be “relaxing”, isn’t it?

At any rate, here are a few simple guidelines to keep in mind before grabbing your garden shears or lopers:

  • Never remove more than 1/4 of a tree’s crown at one time, the stress placed on the remaining tree may be more than it can handle, and the amount removed should be even less with mature trees.
  • Pruning young trees is the best way to get well-shaped mature trees, which then minimizes the amount of pruning or cutting back a mature tree will require.
  • Make your cuts clean and as close to the main branch as possible.
  • Remember, small wounds heal faster than large ones, thereby minimizing changes for infestation.

Making clean cuts

Making clean cuts while pruning is as simple as making sure your pruning shears are sharp.  For larger branches, a 3-step process will help prevent tears and bark peel-backs.

  1. Make a shallow cut on the underside using a small handsaw; this will prevent the bark from tearing or peeling away extra bark when the final cut is made and the branch falls.
  2. Your main cut should be made to the “outside” of your undercut.
  3. Your third and final cut should be made outside of, but as close to the branch-tree collar as possible.


Prices current as of 11/19/2012

 

Organic Secrets

Gardeners, Discover The Easy Way To Save Money and Eat Healthy For Life With Organic Secrets.

 

onestoporganicgardening.com/organic-secrets-cover

Organic Secrets

Organic Secrets is an amazing fact filled book.  Over two years to research and write and now for the first time available as a digital download.  You will be able to start reading this “comprehensive manual to everything organic” in less than five minutes. 

Order Organic Secrets and you’ll have the plain, simple facts about growing your own healthy organic produce in your garden. 

There is a special of 75% off the regular price on this e-book available now.  See below.




You’ll get over 40 chapters that explain in plain and simple terms how to become ‘Organic’ – You will read about the basics including: creating the best soil, when and how to plant seeds through to great time and labor saving ideas on eradicating garden pests safely and choosing the perfect tools to make light of any task.

“This fantastic, easy to follow guide book is written for both the amateur gardener and the enthusiast alike.”

If you are new to organic gardening the in-depth advice on growing over 36 different types of vegetables will be indispensable – find out when to sow, maintain your crop and when to harvest to get the very best from your garden.

Here are just some of the delicious, healthy, vegetables covered in this great book:

 Broad Beans, French Beans, Runner Beans
 Beetroot
 Broccoli & Calabrese
 Brussels Sprouts
 Spring, Summer and Autumn Cabbages
 Carrots
 Cauliflowers
 Celery
 Corn Salad
 Courgettes
 Cucumbers
 Fennel
 Garlic
 Leeks
 Lettuces
 Onions
 Parsnips
 Peas
 Potatoes
 Sweet corn
 Tomatoes . . . . . And Many More !

Organic Secrets will help you keep your family healthy and save you hundreds of dollars each year on your shopping bill.

Organic Secrets has been specially created in e-book format – this means that when you order your copy you will receive it within minutes and you will be reading and putting the advice into practice.

Guarantee

100% Guarantee

Ordering is fast secure and easy – All transactions are handled by PayPal. 

Get your copy now for just $19.95.  To show my appreciation for interest in my site, I am selling this e-book at a special price of $4.99.  That’s 75% off the regular price!  Buy it now before its too late.




WORRY FREE:  If for any reason you are not 100%  delighted with your purchase we will refund your payment in full for up to 30 days no questions asked.  That’s more than a guarantee, that’s a promise!

 

onestoporganicgardening.com/Organic-Secrets

Organic Secrets

 

Please Note:  In order to read Organic Secrets you will need: Microsoft Windows 95, 98, NT4, Me, 2000 or XP, and you’ll need Internet Explorer 4 or later.

 

If you live a green lifestyle, then it’s time you use green techniques to take care of your backyard.  Contrary to popular belief, using environmentally friendly products is not difficult or expensive.  All you need to do is find the most appropriate natural plant food to make your garden a lot greener.

In a recent research conducted by the University of California, it was discovered that most water contamination is due to the use of inorganic plant food products in the agricultural sector.  The good news is that growers have started to change their traditional inorganic plant food products for more greener alternatives.  We all should do the same when taking care of our gardens.

Advantages of natural plant food products

This type of plant food is great way of improving the natural ground composition and at the same time improving the condition and aspect of your plants.  When you use natural plant food in your backyard, you will notice an improvement during the developmental stages of the plants.  Also your backyard will look green for longer periods.  Another advantage of using natural plant food products is that they enhance the composition of the ground in your garden.

And, if you have sandy ground in your garden, you will not have to worry about plants not being able to survive there because by using natural plant food your ground will improve significantly.  Apart from that, natural fertilizers will help your ground hold water in a more efficient way.  As the natural plant food is made from natural ingredients it will provide your soil with microbes that will help plants develop in a better way.

What ingredients are used to make natural plant food?

Many times people go to the store and just grab whatever plant food that is on the shelves.  However, any organic gardener who claims to be so needs to know what the product contains.  If you know what components are used to make that plant food you are buying, it will be easier to stay away from those products that are not natural.

As has been discussed elsewhere on this site, all plants need three basic nutrients to grow.   They are nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus and almost all natural products contain them.  However, different plants have differing needs in the proportions these elements are given.

In case you want to grow roses, good alternatives of natural plant food products are brown algae plant food and blood aliment.  Brown algae concentrates have good quantities of potassium, but no phosphorus at all.  Therefore you should combine it other products to get better results.

So, as you can see, you first should determine what nutrients the plants you plan on growing need to thrive and then, seek out the proper natural plant foods to supply them with in order to provide those nutrients, while at the same time, reducing excess use of chemicals that may end up polluting the environment.

Biozome added to your compost helps your garden grow!

In a recent post, I talked about adding Azomite to your organic garden to provide necessary micro-nutrients and minerals that most soils are sorely lacking or completely void of.  This post discusses yet another little known, but potentially helpful additive for the organic gardener, in particular, for anyone who is wanting to improve their soil condition with the use of compost.

You can consider Biozome to be a super compost booster.  Basically, it accelerates and improves the compost process by providing bacteria that help to release the nutrients.  It is considered to be a compost inoculant, which when added works by freeing up soil nutrients and making them more bio-available for plants to access or creating symbiotic relationships with the plants root systems.

What is Biozome?

This question is more easily answered by telling you what it is not, it is not a fertilizer, a pesticide, nor a genetically modified organism.

BioZome is a highly concentrated blend of natural microorganisms put together by Dr. Carl Oppenheimer after 40 years of research. It has been proven to triple the growth rate, decrease seed germination time, produce more flowers and increase crop yield. Plants grown using BioZome produce healthier roots and show increased disease and pest resistance. The micro-organisms are primitive “Archaea” collected from salt pans, hot springs, and volcanic regions all over the world.

“Archaea”, for the scientifically inclined, as defined by Wikipedia:  (/ɑrˈkiːə/ ( listen) ar-kee) are a group of single-celled microorganisms. A single individual or species from this domain is called an archaeon (sometimes spelled “archeon”). They have no cell nucleus or any other membrane-bound organelles within their cells.

Biologyonline.com adds:  One in the three-domain system (the other are Bacteria and Eukaryota) which includes halophiles (microorganisms that may inhabit extremely salty environments), methanogens (microorganisms that produce methane), and thermophiles (microorganisms that can thrive extremely hot environments).

That’s the long answer.  The short answer is, I don’t know!  What’s more important is that:

  1. *its not harmful to you,
  2. it accelerates the composting process, and
  3. works to make your plants healthier and more productive when added to your garden soil.

And, by added, I’m referring to using the compost that you have souped-up by adding Biozome to.

BioZome is a great compost starter.  It works in your compost pile in several ways; it greatly accelerates the breakdown rate, it uses very little water, and it can work in very low oxygen situations.  And, remember, your compost material will be filled with these “archaea” organisms that will continue to do their work on your garden plants when you mix your compost in your garden.

And, its wallet friendly! There really isn’t any reason not to super charge your composting with Biozome, readily available as Jobe’s Organic Compost Starter 4-Pound Bag

Prices current as of 11/19/2012.

*HAZARDOUS INGREDIENTS and IDENTITY INFORMATION

BioZome – an enzymatic mixture of active hydrocarbon oxidizing natural single celled organisms. The enzymes and cells are contained in an inert preparation of natural clay. The mixture has no chemical impact. The mixture should be handled with the normal precautions of a hydroscopic powder. In enclosed areas protective eye and mask covering is recommended. This mixture has been tested by human contact for over 20 years with no direct or indirect impact.

WarningThis clay product contains a small amount of crystalline silica which may cause delayed respiratory disease if inhaled over a prolonged and extended period of time. Avoid breathing the dust.

 

Azomite To Your Organic Garden

While most of the attention is given to the “big 3” of nutrients; nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium, plants also require trace minerals and micro-nutrients to thrive. Azomite – Organic Trace Mineral Soil Additive Fertilizer is a great way to supplement the feeding of your garden soil, whether you are growing organically or not. Odds are good that your soil is lacking, or in many cases, void of many of these trace elements that plants need to flourish.

What is Azomite?

Azomite is the name of a special rock in Utah. Early in the 20th century geological prospector Rollin Anderson found deposits of montmorillonite clay in a valley south of Salt Lake City. AZOMITE® is a registered trade mark and is an acronym for “A to Z of Minerals Including Trace Elements”. AZOMITE® contains more than 60 trace minerals which include many rare earth elements.

AZOMITE® is listed by the Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) for use in organic production. It is simply mined, crushed and sold. It has a pH of 8.0 and does contain trace amounts of heavy metals and lead, but in lesser amounts than might be found in your typical soil sample. It does not contain sufficient amounts of nitrogen, phosphorous, or potassium, so additional plant fertilizing is necessary from other sources for these macro-nutrients.

How much do you need?

Here are the application guidelines given at azomite.com:

“When preparing the soil, use AZOMITE® at the rate of 1 lb per 10 sq ft. If in rows, mix with the seed or starter plant and apply at the rate of 1 lb per 25 ft of row. If bed is established, sprinkle around each plant. AZOMITE® should be applied with compost, humus, manures, or other fertilizers to provide additional levels of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. AZOMITE® will not burn plants. For house plants, mix 1 teaspoon per 2 inch pot diameter with potting soil before planting. Give 1 teaspoon quarterly thereafter. For roses, apply 1/2 lb. to 1 lb. to the soil around each plant and lightly till into soil.”

Prices current as of 11/19/2012

*Note: The Azonite granular, pictured in the center above, comes in 4, 8, and 12-lb bags (4 lb bag shown). I believe the other two products are Azomite powder, which should not be spread with a spreader due to excess dust produced, but the granular product can be. Also note that the larger 44 lb. bag price does not include shipping, which will add approx. $26.50. So, you’re looking at roughly just under $2.00/lb.

While not the cheapest supplement to your garden, I also don’t think that its prohibitive when you consider the benefits received. The average garden might use 5-10 lbs, of course, if you have a larger garden, then you may want to consider getting the 44 lb. bag.  So, I would estimate that you’re looking at $20-25/year to add Azomite to your organic garden.

Biodegradable Bags For Compost: In This Case, Tree Leaves

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What is made of a biodegradable recyclable material called jute, is environmentally and user friendly, and totally useful and fertilizes the yard? A product for collection and composting of leaves called garden composting leaf sacks.

In the fall season of the year mother nature begins preparation for the winter season. In many areas the obvious change taking place is the color of the leaves of the trees. And alas with the gorgeous panorama of autumn, reds, golden, oranges and browns comes the inevitable falling of those deciduous pieces to the ground. No longer green the wind has scattered them about the landscape, or to be more precise, your lawn.

An inevitable autumn chore is to rake all those specimens into piles. A few brave souls will mound them high and jump dive and roll through them to be piled again. Putting the piles of leaves into bags is easier said than done. Plastic bags are not made for natural breakdown. This process can contribute to organic landfill waste or worse if left at curbside they are ugly and can cause storm drain clogging which may lead to flooding.

The bio degradable leaf collecting sacks made especially for composting are perfect for those who are environmentally conscious and want to recycle nature. Rake the leaves, place in the bags, made of totally recyclable, decomposing material called jute, pile them in a corner of the yard or better yet the garden to be used as soil enhancement next season. These sacks are hassle free, no double work of collecting then piling, only to have them blow away. Put the leaves in the large jute sacks and take them where you want extra soil nutrients for next growing season. The sacks degrade at the same rate as the leaves letting the leaves stay right where you put them, not scattered about by the wind, dogs, vermin or other critters.These bags or sacks as they are called are great for someone who is environmentally conscious but doesn’t want to maintain garden composters full time or even if you do not have enough space to keep garden composting bins you can still save space in the landfill and fertilize your lawn or garden and at the same time follow codes for inside city limits. Bags are sold in packages of 2.

Every year cool weather brings autumn and the beautiful color changes many of us love. However this beauty brings with it a chore to be accomplished. While a few are able to just enjoy the fun of playing in the piles most of us have to think further than simply raking the leaves into piles. We can use the option of biodegradable leaf collection sacks for a win -win situation. The environment wins in two ways. First composting the leaves means no added organic waste in the landfill and second the decomposing leaves add all those rich natural nutrients right back into the soil by composting.

My name is Patricia Bass. I am so fortunate to live in a rural area where i can enjoy and experience nature each and every day. From my porch i can listen to the creek for which Buck Branch Enterprize is named while watching my horses graze or play in the pasture. I sometimes see the wood chuck who has a path he travels down to the creek. I hope i don’t see the rascal of a opossum who seems to like chicken eggs fresh from the coop. Please visit my store http://www.compostingplace.com for garden composting bins,barrel composting,and compost bins tumbler as well as decorative rain barrels.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Patricia_D_Bass

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