Organic Bouquet, a mission-based company focusing on environmental, social and economic sustainability, is the largest online provider of sustainable flowers and eco-elegant gifts. Organic Bouquet is focused on responsible practices in every step of production – from the environment of the growers through the distribution chain to the final consumer. Below are a few tips for creating an organic garden right in your own backyard from Robert McLaughlin, avid gardener and CEO of OrganicBouquet.com.
- Chemical-free plot: Choose a plot of land that hasn’t been exposed to pesticides, synthetic fertilizer or nonorganic compost for three years. Also, make sure sunlight hits the area.
- Make a bed: After you have carefully chosen your plot of land, and three weeks before you are ready to plant, loosen the soil with a fork about 1 foot deep. Add 1/2 inch layer of compost to your weed and clump-free land. If any weeds come through, pull them.
- Water the land: Ideally, your plot of land should be moistened, not soaked from watering.
- Sow the seeds: Follow directions on seed packets to spread the seeds appropriately in the trench or planting holes, as each plant has different requirements.
- Cover seeds: Sprinkle soil on top of the seeds according to the directions on the seed packet. Some seeds need light, while others do not, so levels of burying will vary.
- Prevent and control weeds: Pulls any weeds by hand. If that’s not manageable, mix a homemade weed killer. Grab a large bucket and fill with a few inches of salt. Fill the rest of the bucket with water and mix well. Pour the mixture on and around your weeds, avoiding pouring the mixture directly on your plants, as it will change the pH of the soil.
- Eliminate pests: Not all insects are bad for your organic garden. For instance, ladybugs will help fight aphids off your roses. Alternatively, try spraying your plants with soapy water. Mix 1/4 cup of eco-friendly and organic dish soap with 1 gallon of water, and spray on plants about once a month. For aphids, you can try one part vinegar to three parts water sprayed around your plants.
- Keep garden moist: When you notice your garden surface becoming dry, sprinkle with water to keep the bed moist so seeds will be able to sprout.