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How to Start & Grow Organic Fruits & Vegtables

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How to Start & Grow Organic Fruits & Vegtables

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Overview

Organic fruits and vegetables are grown using soil that is not treated with chemical fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides. The premise behind organic gardening is sustainability. The goal is to grow as much food as you desire without stripping the soil of its nutrients, which would make it unusable for years to come. The means of attaining this goal is a combination of responsible planting and organic depositing through compost and other organic means.

Step 1

Determine your USDA hardiness zone and growing seasons.

Step 2

Contact your county extension office and obtain a soil test kit. Conduct the test by following the instructions in the kit and send the soil back for analysis with a note requesting organic soil augments when required. If your county extension doesn't offer this service, use an at-home test kit.

Step 3

Clear the garden area of all grass and weeds. The best organic grass and weed killer is undiluted white distilled vinegar. Fill a spray dilutor bottle with vinegar and attach it to your hose. Spray the entire area heavily with the vinegar. For best results, spray just before the sun will hit that area of the yard.

Step 4

Rake and remove all the dead grass and weeds and till the surface of the soil to a depth of 1 foot to soften it for augmentation.

Step 5

Follow the augmentation recommendations of the county extension office, tilling each organic nutrient into the soil.

Step 6

Leave the soil to rest for one year, weeding as necessary.

Step 7

Research and select seeds that will thrive in your hardiness zone. Some examples of easy vegetables to grow include brussels sprouts, chives, onions, bell peppers and green beans.

Step 8

Form a compost pile with plant clippings and leftover food, such as fruit peels, eggshells and grass clippings. These can be combined inside a ventilated container to decompose into compost. Compost is a nutrient-rich soil additive, essential to balanced and productive soil.

Step 9

Plant your seeds according to the seed packet’s instructions.

Step 10

Observe your plants for any signs of pests, diseases or deficiencies and reference an organic source for a solution. A useful book dealing with organic gardening is “Rodale's Ultimate Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening: The Indispensable Green Resource for Every Gardener.”

Step 11

Harvest your vegetables once they're ready. Deposit the stems, leaves and roots in the compost pile. Till more compost into the soil after each harvest.

Things You'll Need

  • Soil test kit White distilled vinegar Spray dilutor bottle Rake Till

References

  • USDA: National Organic Program
  • Northwestern Health Sciences University: Organic Gardening
Keywords: organic compost creation, make organic compost, grow organic garden

About this Author

Steven White is a privately contracted software engineer, web developer, and tech support representative. He has 3 years of experience providing technical support for AT&T broadband customers. He is currently a Master's of Software Engineering student and enjoys sharing his knowledge and expertise with others.