Organic Gardens

Discussion in 'Gardening' started by PeaceLoveAndWeed, May 30, 2007.

  1. I think it would be a good idea for people wanting to grow an organic garden but not sure what to use in certain situations to start a thread with ways to solve problems organically.

    Ill start
    for different kinds of catipillars/worms (no not earth worms) you can use Bt a all natural pesticide which will basically make the catipillar/worm not want to eat and eventually dies of starvation. It is proven not to hurt any beneficial insects or humans or pets.
  2. Gaston

    Gaston Loup Garou

    I'm trying interplanting this season - mixing pest-discouraging plants with the vegetables. I've got marigolds scattered throughout the garden, I'm using the "Three Sisters" method on corn, beans and squash (with the thought that strong healthy plants are more bug resistant), and I planted morning glories and four o'clocks with the cucumbers. We'll see how it works. I've also tried a lot of mixed plantings instead of having an area for each vegetable; the theory is that the bugs may miss more of their favorites that way.

    Cucumber beetles have already hit the young plants, I used a treatment that has pyrethrin (from daisies) in a diatomaceous earth base, and it works if used properly. My end goal is a no-kill garden, but it's going to take some time to learn how to do it. In the meantime I'll give the bugs some of the garden, but not all of it.
  3. I liek your idea of the no kill garden. I think i good rule of thumb is, bugs have to eat too. You shouldnt really start killing off everybug that happens to wander in your garden. Only when a problem and it is effecting your plants should you start killing them off. Or if you know that the bugs will lead to a drastic problem.
  4. tikoo

    tikoo Senior Member

    Abundant Life is a good enough garden religion . communion is reality . i got some funny wild talking rabbits . peace in the garden !
  5. I have a tip on helping water retain moisture. Well you know how you have a thing of lint everytime you use yourdryer to dry you clothes? mix that with your soil. That itself will retain many times its weight in water. i beleive its upwards of 8 or ten times more than its weight.
  6. Gaston

    Gaston Loup Garou

    Three helpful books:

    Lasagna Gardening by Patricia Lanza - especially good if you want to have a garden where you now have grass, and/or if you don't own a tiller.

    The Ruth Stout No-Work Garden Book - Ruth was what folks around here call "a character". If you have access to lots of free compostables like ruined hay, leaves, etc. her methods work great.

    Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew - best book on planning I've seen, his ideas will let you grow an amazing amount of food in a small place without working yourself to death.
  7. Square foot gardening is a very good one. One of the first gardening books i have ever read.
  8. gardener

    gardener Realistic Humanist

    Ruth Stout is the best....I grew up on her and have used a lot of her tips.
  9. Avocado Noni

    Avocado Noni Member

    There's also an e-book on organic gardening techniques here -

    E-books are better for the environment since they don't require excessive paper use that isn't recycled as long as your into organic gardening and conscious living, you may as well go all out ;)
  10. Gaston

    Gaston Loup Garou

    Ah, well, the no-kill garden is off to an inauspicious start. I got hit with cucumber beetles as soon as the squash had the first true leaves. A little dusting with diatomaceous earth/pyrethrin got rid of them. Then, the squash vine borers came. Another dusting ... then they're back. Persistent little bastards, aren't they? If the squash/cukes live long enough I'll just bury part of the vines so they'll put down new roots, BT treatment would probably work but it's pretty expensive.

    Makes me feel like a Bruce Willis movie character, "Look, I don't want to kill you ... help me out with this a little." [​IMG]
  11. homeschoolmama

    homeschoolmama Senior Member

    I like square-foot gardening too! When we have room enough to do actual beds, that's what I'll be using. I want to combine it with companion planting to eliminate as many pests naturally as I can. For now we're doing round-container gardening; we've got Mel's Mix in our containers & they're planted according to his suggestions. So far so good, but give me 3 months before I know how it turns out. ;)

    My favorite organic solution for most nibbly little bugs like aphids & caterpillars is to fill a spray bottle with soapy water and spray all the leaves - especially the undersides with aphids. They can't hang onto the leaves anymore, and leave!

    Guinea pigs (and rabbits) make wonderful organic fertilizer for free. ;) Two piggies are making enough to cover all of our veggies AND most of our flower beds!
  12. Gaston

    Gaston Loup Garou

    I really like the idea of using the strawberry pot (here we'd call it a hen-and-chickens pot) for herbs, that wouldn't have occurred to me. That mint will make some tasty tabbouleh!
  13. gardener

    gardener Realistic Humanist

    Know what you mean Gaston. I've given up cucumbers for the second year in a row, because I don't want to resort to chemical means. That's ok other stuff is doing just fine. Maybe it's mother natures way of telling me I don't need them this year.
  14. Another way to kill aphids is brewing a tobacco tea and spraying it on infected plants.
  15. Gaston

    Gaston Loup Garou

    Only if you haven't planted tomatoes. Or peppers. Or eggplant. Tobacco carries the tobacco mosaic virus which isn't curable. The only way I know to stop it is to pull up all the infected plants and burn them, and restrict future plantings in that area to mosaic-resistant varieties for several years.
  16. Good Point. I didnt think of that and im the one that works at a nursery!! haha
  17. Sea Breeze

    Sea Breeze Member

    Like Mom, I make a mix of washing up liquid (eco-variety!!) and milk to use as a bug spray. My broad beans suddenly got a bad infestation of black fly but that mix soon sorted them out.

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