Tired of adulterated Vegetables? Start an Organic Garden at Home! (Making of Organic Soil)

Starting to build a new garden isn’t difficult. Most people begin by going out into their yards with a shovel or garden tiller, digging up the dirt and putting in a few plants. Following the organic and natural methods, add a little mulch or compost, and you’re well on your way to make good soil for your homegrown vegetables. But in the long run, the success of your garden depends on making healthy garden soil. The more you can do to keep your soil healthy, the more productive your garden will be and the higher the quality of your crops.

Part 2: Making of Organic Soil

  1. Make a compost pile

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Compost is the main ingredient for developing rich organic soil. You can use almost any kind of organic material to make compost that will enrich your soil, but the best things to start with are usually right there in your garden: Fallen leaves, Weeds (preferably before they go to seed), Grass clippings, Old fruit and vegetable trimmings and Don’t use anything containing oil, fat, meat, grease, feces, dairy, or wood chips.

2. Test the pH of your soil

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Test the pH of your soil by buying pH test strips from a garden store. Stir a handful of soil with lukewarm distilled water until it’s the consistency of a milkshake, then dip the pH test strip in. Hold it there for 20-30 seconds, then compare the strip to the test kit’s key. -The pH (acidity versus alkalinity) of your soil should be somewhere between 5.5 to 7.0 for plants to thrive. -If your soil is too acidic (below 5.5), buy dolomite or quicklime to add to the soil, then retest. -If your soil is too alkaline (above 7.0), add more organic matter, like peat moss or compost, then test the soil again.

 

3. Measure your soil’s drainage

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Dig a hole in your garden or container 1 ft × 1 ft (0.30 m × 0.30 m) wide. Fill the hole with water and wait 24 hours. Then, fill the hole with water again and measure how fast the water drops with a tape measure. The ideal rate is 2 in (5.1 cm) per hour. -Adding a few cups of compost or peat moss will help soil that drains too fast and soil that drains too slow. -For a less scientific test, moisten your soil and grab a handful of it. The soil should hold together, but fall apart when you poke it with a finger. If your soil holds its shape or falls apart without a poke, add more organic matter (compost or peat moss) to improve its drainage.

 

4. Add organic soil from your compost heap

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The key to organic agriculture is great soil. Add as much organic material to your soil as you can, preferably from your compost heap. Soil that has been built up with plenty of organic matter is good for your garden for a lot of reasons: -It will nourish your plants without chemical fertilizers. -It is easier to get shovels into—and weeds out of—enriched soil that isn’t packed hard. -It is softer so plant roots can penetrate more easily and deeply. -It will help water and air spend the right amount of time in contact with roots. Clay soils can be heavy and will stay wet for a long time. Sandy soils can drain water too quickly. Compost mitigates both conditions.
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Author: SUVIDHA

SUVIDHA abbreviated as Society for the Upliftment of Villagers & Development of Himalayan Areas is a non-profit, rural development and voluntary organization founded in the year 2004 which aims at eliminating poverty, unemployment, poor health and illiteracy for 60% of citizens who still live in the backward areas of the nation. With over 13 years of experience in managing government/private sector projects, Suvidha is well equipped with the manpower and expertise to deliver holistic solutions in the field of Agriculture, Rural development, Women Empowerment, Education and Health.

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