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Planting a Sustainable Garden

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small vegetable garden

Gardening is thought of as a eco-friendly method of obtaining fresh and delicious produce. The eco-friendly and sustainable benefits of having a garden are easy to undertand when they are juxtaposed with the industrial farming methods that are currently in vogue. Industrial farms mass produce produce and use amonia and other chemicals to increase the yield to atypical amounts. Amonia adds an infusion of some nutrients to the soil but saps the long-term vitalithy of the soil. Farm produced items are then shipped around the country in a process that consumes gas, packaging, and often waste and food items rot on shelves.

A home garden is considered to be much more sustainable but there are certain steps that can be undertaken to grow a more sustainable garden. Reduce the need to buy fertilizer by starting a composting station in your backyard. A composting unit can be purchased and inside you can add odd vegetable skins, food by-products, and even newspaper. Over time these organic materials will decompose and will add to the overall nutrition in the soil. Composting is part of a sustainable garden in that it does not require the purchase of store fertilizer that is shipped around the country. Further, it reduces the garbage waste that you would otherwise be throwing away and converts that into a useful fertilizer.

Water management is another part of developing a sustainable garden. Some individuals will set up a rain catch that will store rain water and allow you to apply it to your garden without having to use water from your water system that can be expensive and needless. Selecting fruits and vegetables that are well adapted to the climate that you live in will also help to reduce the amount of water needed. Native plants have evolved to live in the climate and often require little to know maintenance and have natural resistances to pests which can remove the need to use any sort of pesticide.

If pesticides are needed, see if there are natural alternatives. For example, purchasing a colony of ladybugs or preying mantises can reduce the need for a pesticide as these natural predators will remove many of the insect pests that may harm the fruits and vegetables that you grow.

Maximizing space is essential in a garden and requries a gardener to identify the soil and sun needs for different plants that they are planning on growing and finding the right spot for them. Be sure to maximize space in your garden by planting items in a logical way that allows you to use the needed space, but still access ripe fruits and vegetables.

Maintaining proper crop rotation can also be an essential part of having a sustainable garden. This involves understanding the nutrient needs of the plants that you are planning on growing in your garden. Some plants leach many of the nutrients from the soil and planting the same plants in the same location can not only reduce the yield from your garden, but can also lead to the need for fertilizer. Rotating crops seasonally can reduce the need for this. Leaving some parts of your garden fallow with a cover crop that will improve the soil by adding nutrients can also improve the overall productivity of the soil and lead to a more sustainable garden in the long run.

 

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