Wishing to start organic farming and have no idea where to start? We hear you. Creating your organic farm for whatever reason is a fantastic idea, and with the right tools, anyone can do it—the reason why today we’ll be telling you all about how to start organic farming.
With the growing need to eat fresh and natural ingredients, it is no surprise more and more people are joining the organic wagon and starting their organic farms. If you are one of those people and like a good challenge, and you are probably spending a lot of time at home, why not just go for it.
Organic farming can be an excellent project for the entire family, plus it has many benefits as you will rip all that you grow in it. With that said, when you’re a first-timer, little research is always a good idea.
And though it may seem a little intimidating, especially if you are new to farming and growing your plants/food, you have nothing to worry about. With this guide, you’ll find out everything you need to know about how to start organic farming.
How to Start Organic Farming for beginners?
Step 1: Select Your Site
- Choose a location that receives at least 6 to 8 hours of sunlight each day. Most fruiting plants, like tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, and melons, need full sun to produce well.
- However, don’t despair if your garden is a bit shady. Leafy greens like lettuce, kale, and many herbs can tolerate partial sun.
- Stay away from large trees and roots, which can steal nutrients and water from your vegetables.
- Be sure you have easy access to a water source, too.
Step 2: Use Great Soil
- Excellent soil filled with nutrients is one primary key to a successful organic garden. Rich, well-draining soil encourages your plants to produce robust root systems.
- If this is your first-time organic gardening, start a compost pile now to help enrich the soil, but remember, it takes a while for compost to break down to use in your garden.
- In the meantime, create ideal soil by mixing 3 inches of Miracle-Gro Performance Organics All-Purpose In-Ground Soil, enriched with aged compost, in with the top 6 inches of existing garden soil to give your plants a great start.
Miracle-Gro Performance Organics All-Purpose In-Ground soil will feed your plants for up to 3 months.
Also, this soil has been specially designed for planting in-ground and can be used as part of a planting mixture for raised beds.
It is formulated from natural and organic ingredients like processed forest products.
- Natural ingredients
Step 3: Pick the Perfect Plants
- Selecting plants native to your region or bred specifically for your climate helps create a healthy, low-maintenance organic garden, which is especially important if you’re new to organic.
- For example, you may see short-season tomatoes perfect for colder northern climates or tomatoes that withstand high temperatures and humidity for southern regions.
- Don’t dismiss disease-resistant hybrid plants, either, as they can also create less work and more excellent harvests in the garden.
- Plant a variety of flowers and flowering herbs to attract pollinators and other beneficial insects that will help keep pests away and your plants happy.
Step 4: Water Wisely
- Too much water can be just as bad for your plants as not enough, so always check the soil before watering. Stick your finger one inch down into the soil.
- If the soil feels moist, leave it alone, but if it’s dry, it’s time to water. Be sure to water the soil surrounding the base of the plants, so the roots absorb the moisture.
- Not only is watering the leaves wasteful, but it can also create an environment that invites disease.
Step 5: Feed Your Plants
- Throughout the growing season, give your plants regular boosts of energy. Plants need extra nutrients to produce bountiful harvests, huge, hungry plants like tomatoes and peppers.
Miracle-Gro Performance Organics Edibles Plant Nutrition is specifically formulated for growing tomatoes, vegetables, herbs, and fruits.
Easily feed your plants while watering. Feed your garden plants every seven days for best results. It covers up to 265 sq. ft. when used in the Miracle-Gro Performance Organics Garden Feeder.
- Vital nutrients
- Instantly feeds plants
Step 6: Maintain With Mulch
- A thick layer of organic mulch not only helps control weeds by blocking the sun they need to grow but also helps retain moisture in the soil, so you may need to be waterless.
- Mulch also creates the look of a tidy, pretty garden. While pine straw and wheat straw are popular mulch choices, untreated grass clippings, chopped leaves, and aged wood shavings are also good options.
Step 7: Rotate crops
- One of the best ways to protect your organic garden is to use a time-tested method called “crop rotation,” which means moving plant types to different locations each year.
Step 8: Clean Up Debris
- Good hygiene is just as crucial for the garden as it is for the gardener.
- Remove diseased leaves and plants, regularly check leaves and stems for pests, and dispose of garden litter (think overripe fruit, broken branches, fallen leaves).
- Ensure to clean tools often, wiping with disinfecting clothes if you’ve used them on plants that might be diseased.
Step 9: Harvesting
- Perennial herbs such as oregano, sage, and thyme are the simplest to harvest. Cut about one-third to one-half of the plant’s height any time during the growing season.
- Basil and other annual herbs grown for their leaves need regular harvesting during the summer. By mid-summer, plants are near their final height. Most annuals need periodic harvesting to keep them from going to seed. Clipping lets them focus on growing leaves.
- After the flowers open, harvest edible herb flowers such as dill, lavender, borage, and tarragon. At that point, the heads will be firm and at the maximum flavor. Handle them gently to minimize damage.
- Gathering dill, coriander (cilantro), and other seed producers requires more careful timing. Watch for the seeds to plump and turn brown. Clip the heads immediately, or you’ll lose your harvest to hungry birds or high winds.
- For all your herbs, harvest only parts that are in good condition. Leaves, seeds, or flowers that are damaged or wilted won’t improve after they’re clipped.
Common Questions Regarding How to Start Organic Farming
Why are rotating crops important?
When members of the same crop family (such as tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants, all nightshade family members) are always planted in the same place year after year, pests and diseases attack that particular kind of plant can build up and overwinter in the soil. Then they’re ready to attack the next time that plant is planted.
By mixing up your garden plan and moving plants to different beds or areas in the garden, you’ll avoid pests and diseases that may lurk in the soil.
How to Start Organic Farming? How to prepare the soil for organic farming?
- Prepare the soil with cow dung and nutritious compost (to make your compost, order this kit)
- Look out for weeds, pests after planting. Once the infestation happens, it isn’t straightforward to recover.
- Everyday care is a must. Watering with cow dung solution, natural fertilizers, etc., shouldn’t be skipped.
- Hang yellow or blue boards with castor oil spread on them to prevent pests. (Cooler alternative to scarecrows, the problems get stuck on the boards.)
- Opt for plants that require more sunlight and less water: tomatoes, beans, climbers are good examples.
- Prioritize those that are vulnerable to an infestation in loose soil.
- The benefits of terrace farming are they attract less weed, and each plant gets more nutrients.
What soil to use when using a container garden?
For a container garden, use a potting mix designed for containers. It’s lighter and drains better than garden soil, allowing water and nutrients to reach the plant’s roots easily. Make sure your pots have drainage holes, too, because few vegetables or herbs like having “wet feet.”
What tools do you need for farming?
Essential tools you’ll need for the job include:
Patented power gear non-circular gearing technology multiplies leverage to make cutting up to three times easier than single-pivot tools.
Razor-sharp, precision-ground blade cuts with less resistance than thicker blades and stays sharp for lasting value.
Rust-resistant, low-friction coating helps the blade glide through wood and prevents it from gumming up with sap and debris.
Ideal for various tasks, including digging, weeding, loosening soil, aerating, transplanting, and more.
Soft, contoured handles are ergonomically designed to reduce hand and wrist fatigue while working.
Curved heads and forked tines make breaking up tough soil easy.
- Contoured handles
- Curved heads
The large openings and removable door make it easy to add scraps/clippings and remove finished compost. Deep Fins on the body provide excellent ergonomic handholds.
Two composter chambers are better than one; two separate sides allow the first side to finish while leaving the second side available to add fresh scraps/clippings.
Continuously swapping sides after finishing will create an uninterrupted flow of rich, healthy compost.
Breathable Bamboo to keep your hands cool; Bamboo absorbs perspiration, is naturally very breathable.
Keeps your hands cool in summer and warm in winter. Pine Tree Gloves are suitable for any job and guaranteed a pleasure to wear.
This classic Union Products blow-mold plastic garden accessory still proudly features a replaceable screw-on sprinkler head and tulip design on the sides.
Watering Can stands 13 inches tall, 17 inches long, and holds 2 gallons of water.