So, you’ve done your research and decided that organic gardening is the right choice for you? If you answered yes, then let us help you get ready to dig in and start growing. But where to begin? Simply put: It starts with the soil.
Get your soil ready.
A healthy organic garden requires healthy soil that’s designed to support a thriving ecosystem of beneficial micro-organisms and nutrients to feed your plants. Your first step as an organic gardener will be make sure your soil is optimized to successfully grow your plants. A great way to do this is to check the quality of your soil with a home testing kit that will tell help you understand the current pH and nutrient levels of your soil. Chances are, you’ll need to amend your soil with proven organic soils, organic planting mix, organic mulch and organic fertilizers.
Your primer on organic gardening products.
The success of your organic garden relies on the types of gardening products you use to help it grow and thrive. Here’s an overview of the different types of organic gardening products you’ll need to get started and keep growing.
Organic Garden Soils
Soil is the first basic ingredient for your organic garden. Your garden’s current soil, however, is likely lacking necessary nutrients and composition needed for a healthy, thriving organic garden. That’s where organic soils come in.
Organic soils are great for a wide range of plants and gardens, including lawns, flowers, herbs, vegetable and fruits. Proven organic soils are enriched with natural ingredients that promote a healthy soil ecosystem. Specialized organic garden soils offer gardeners the ability to soften hard clay, improve drainage for cacti and succulents, or lower the pH for acid loving plants.
Organic Planting Mix
When planting a shrub, rose bush, large ornamental grass, or tree, you will likely need to improve the soil in the planting hole. Organic planting mix–comprised of organic matter such as aged arbor fines and rice hulls, and peat moss–can provide a good supplement for your soil. Just keep in mind, planting mix is meant to be a soil amendment, not a soil replacement. Organic planting mixes are designed to improve the soil structure around your new plant, getting it off to a great start!
Organic Raised Bed & Potting Mix
Plants growing in pots and raised beds have different needs than plants growing in the ground. That’s why it is important to always use an organic potting mix for your container garden and an organic raised bed mix for your raised beds—not an organic garden soil or organic planting mix. Organic potting and raised bed mixes contain key ingredients like perlite, rice hulls, and coconut fibers (coir) to properly balance drainage and water retention.
Organic mulch, made from organic matter with no chemicals or harmful synthetic ingredients, is spread over the surface of soil as a covering. A three inch layer of organic mulch can help reduce watering needs by 30%. Not to mention, organic mulch helps keep your soil cool making it harder for weeds to grow, and thus enhancing the overall look of your garden. Furthermore, when organic mulch begins to decompose, it adds even more organic matter to the soil. Learn more about our organic mulch products.
Not everyone is lucky enough to have rich soil. Chances are, your current soil may be deficient in nutrients, or have imbalanced pH levels (not acidic or alkaline enough). But don’t worry! Kellogg Garden Organic Fertilizers are a simple way to improve your soil’s fertility and feed your healthy soil ecosystem.
Unlike harmful chemical fertilizers that focus on the plant and neglect — and even damage — the soil, organic fertilizers support the long-term health of your soil. Chemical fertilizers will leech your soil of beneficial organic matter, microorganisms and nutrients required for a healthy, sustainable garden. Whereas organic fertilizers are made from natural materials designed to enrich your soil with nutrients, making it a more fertile environment for your plants to grow in.
Choosing the right organic gardening products.
When it comes to selecting the best organic soil, or any other products for your organic garden, it’s simply not enough to look for the word “organic” on the package. Make sure you also carefully evaluate the ingredients list. Many gardening products that claim to be organic will typically include harmful synthetic, genetically modified or even chemical ingredients in their mixes.
To be certain that a product is completely organic, look for products that have been verified by an accredited, independent organization that meets the USDA National Organic Program standards. The Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) is one agency with such credentials. That’s one way to know the product you’re buying is proven organic, down the last ingredient.
Get inspired. And get help.
Take a look at the beautiful, thriving and healthy organic gardens everyday people like you have grown using proven Organic Gardening Products From Kellogg Gardens. And access our library of expert tips, how-to videos, articles and more.