When it comes to growing your own food, you want to consume the healthiest produce and ensure that you are continuing the safest practices possible. This is why organic gardening and the techniques associated with it are so important in our day and age. While much of the world has given themselves over to GMO (genetically modified organism) plants with unknown chemical compositions, organically focused growers are continuing onward with traditional methods that are thousands of years old.
Not only is this the most feasible option, it is also the most nutritious and most logical way to grow our food.
When growing organic food, you know exactly what you are going to be putting into your mouth, rather than the modern practice of ignoring unknown chemicals and mutations in your food. This means that you are going to avoid unknown complications from chemically induced mutations and will logically ensure that you are only eating food that you know is healthy for you. This practice has been proven to improve your health and comes with no unknown health risks, unlike the alternative.
Growing using more traditional methods does come with some challenges that seem unique in our current world. While GMO plants grow under almost any conditions, cultivating natural varieties takes more time and added attention to their proper growing conditions. This can manifest in the form of extended growing times, shade requirements, soil drainage needs, and even fertilizer needs.
However, these challenges have been around for centuries and there are easy solutions available for each and every one of them.
Growing in this manner does have a number of benefits outside of health as well. There are exciting opportunities to create familial heirloom varieties that can be passed on to newer generations or cross bred with other gardener's crops.
This is possible because heirloom seeds and plants grown using natural methods maintain their ability to produce viable seeds, something that mainstream crops have lost. This lack of terminal seeds makes breeding and continuing on centuries old traditions easy and cost efficient.
When choosing to create an organic garden you will need to ensure that you have the correct tools, soil, and maintenance plan in place. The best way to accomplish this is by researching the crop that you want to buy, purchasing seeds from a reputable breeder, and then following their instructions for the crop. Any good breeder will give you information about the soil, shade, water, and growth needs of the seeds that they sell.
The next step is to ensure that your soil is the right condition for the seeds and that it will be able to sustain life. This is usually accomplished by getting a soil test and then correcting for any deficiencies in the soil. When doing this you should avoid any and all commercial treatments as they contain unknown components and can damage the soil or transfer over to your produce. Instead, organic matter such as manure, moss, clippings, and fungi can be introduced and tilled into the soil to create the correct nutrient profile.
Once you have begun growing your crop you will want to ensure that you continue with natural maintenance methods. Avoid chemical additives like Miracle Grow for water, commercial potting soils, and any root additives. It is also important to avoid any pesticides and sprays that contain inorganic compounds. Remember, anything that you put in the ground, on your plants, or into the water can end up in your mouth and in your body as well.
Depending on the variety that you have chosen to plant you may have different harvest times. It is important to keep track of approximate dates and to check on your plants every single day. When growing traditional produce you will have a much shorter time to harvest and utilize your crop as they have not been engineered to contain preservatives. However, this means that they will always taste fresh when they are picked and will have a much fuller flavor profile than anything you buy at the store.
Any fruit or vegetable that you grow using organic methods will be healthier and have a better taste than chemically treated foods. The unadulterated flavors contained within your harvested goods will ensure that all of your food has vibrant and exciting flavors.
By avoiding the chemical infestation of modern GMO foods you prevent traditional breeding and growth methods from stalling and ensure that a new generation of real food will be created and enjoyed by health conscious individuals.
Author, Jonathan Leger is a sponsored member of the Garden Writer's Association and a gardening enthusiast. He runs a site dedicated to the history, education and care of the most genetically advanced roses in the world at KnockoutRoses.net.