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5 Myths About Organic Gardening

5 Myths About Organic Gardening

Organic gardening is a method of growing plants or vegetables that you could describe as “earth-friendly”. To be entirely earth-friendly however, isn’t really possible. You are interfering with nature by gardening with any method, but the goal of organic gardening is relatively simple.

You should aim to feed the soil to ensure that it remains a healthy environment for your plants to grow. This means using natural fertilizer and avoiding chemicals. The soil is ultimately the most important part because without it, nothing grows. It’s also about looking for a natural solution to every problem.

Stay away from chemical solutions to deal with pests or weeds unless you absolutely have to resort to them. It may all seem like more work and effort to begin with, but the organic route isn’t necessarily the harder route, especially if you know what you’re doing.

If it sounds like the method for you, then that’s great! There are however certain things that you need to think about before committing. Like anything else, there are myths about the process that you might actually believe right now. Here are five of those myths about organic gardening that you should get out of your mind:

It’s More Expensive

5 Myths About Organic GardeningIt makes sense why people would think that organic gardening costs more. Organic produce in general is definitely more expensive.

When you buy it from a local gardening center or a grocer, you will be paying more, and that’s where this misconception probably comes from.

All that you really need in order to get yourself started with organic gardening is to buy seeds and mulch, and both of these things come pretty cheap. Also, because you are looking for natural solutions when you’re going the organic route, you can apply that to more than just the plants.

5 Myths About Organic GardeningInstead of buying expensive pots, you could just make your own from repurposed milk cartons or old containers. And you can make your own bug spray too. Garlic and pepper are useful for that.

For most things that you might assume require chemical solutions, there’s a DIY alternative.

Going fully organic means cutting down on costs significantly.

It’s An Expert’s Game

5 Myths About Organic GardeningSometimes people will be put off from trying organic gardening, because of the misconception that you need an entirely different skill set, a more advanced skill set than what’s necessary for more traditional gardening. But that’s not actually the case.

At the end of the day, it’s as simple as cutting out all of the chemical products. All of the actual skills you have to work on are pretty similar. The thing that might be different about it is the fact there is going to be more to do. People get the impression that it’s more difficult because it takes longer.

But that’s just because you’re not just throwing a bunch of chemicals at your plants; you are actually putting in the work to care for them. At the end of the day, it’s really no more difficult than any other style of gardening; there’s just a bit more to do. And that brings me to my next point.

You Must Water New Plants All The Time

5 Myths About Organic GardeningOne of the things that puts people off of organic gardening is that they believe it is going to be a lot more work. In some ways, it is but not necessarily for the reasons that people think.

The extra work leans more toward the enjoyable side of gardening, like making homemade mulch and fertilizer, and finding out how to arrange your plants best  so that they can grow most efficiently. This is the essence of gardening; the monotonous side is things like manually watering the plants.

People tend to believe that you have to water your new plants every single day because the roots get damaged while you’re planting. In fact, you will have the opposite effect. Roots that are damaged can take less water, meaning that if there is too much moisture, it will wear the roots down even more.

5 Myths About Organic GardeningYou don’t need to water until the soil starts to dry. A good plan would be to make sure that the soil is very wet when things are planted.

It will take a couple of days for this to dry out. You can test it by dipping your fingers into the soil, and if it’s drying out, then you can water it again. So if this was one of the reasons why you thought organic gardening wasn’t going to be your thing, then you can scratch it off the list.

Wood Chips Are A Dangerous Mulch

5 Myths About Organic GardeningWood chips are very popular among organic gardeners as a source of mulch, because it’s a cheap and relatively simple way of getting that particular job done. However, there are people who believe that it should be avoided because it decreases the nitrogen count in the soil.

Without nitrogen, plants can’t make any proteins or amino acids, and their DNA won’t be able to form properly. The plants will grow, but they’ll be stunted and more likely to not last. Nitrogen is also a major component of chlorophyll and is essential for growth.

The assumption is that the nitrogen present in the soil will be drawn away from the plants and into the wood chips to decompose them. While it’s true that the wood will draw nitrogen from the soil, it does so at a much less dramatic rate than people realize.

These wood chips will only take microscopic amounts of nitrogen from the soil, and in the grand scheme of things, the nitrogen count that your plants require won’t be affected at all.

Pardon the pun, but although this myth is rooted in scientific truth, it’s nowhere near as big of a problem as people believe it to be.

Your Yield Is Reduced

5 Myths About Organic GardeningA high-yielding crop is something that produces a large amount per square foot of the space in your garden. Because most gardeners are operating from smaller gardens, they tend to look for high-yielding plants and vegetables to maximize the space.

The assumption is that synthetic pesticide and fertilizer is necessary for a high yield, because organic pest control and fertilization do not have the scope of the synthetic alternative. But this assumption isn’t based on small-scale gardening. It’s based on the idea that organic gardening wouldn’t be sufficient for mass producing vegetables.

We’ve already argued for the organic solutions to these issues, but they can’t really be used for large, expansive farms. So if you were trying organic farming on a big farm, then you would indeed have a lower yield, but that doesn’t mean that your personal garden will.

It’s perfectly feasible to have grown high-yielding vegetables organically in a much smaller space. So this is another logical myth, but it’s also unfounded in regards to small gardens.

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14 Comments

  • Charles Posted July 23, 2020 1:06 pm

    Good article.

    • The Lost Herbs Posted July 28, 2020 1:15 pm

      Hi Charles,

      Thank you so much for your comment.
      We really appreciate your feedback.

      God bless!

  • HOWARD Posted July 23, 2020 1:29 pm

    GREAT

    • The Lost Herbs Posted July 28, 2020 1:16 pm

      Hi Howard,

      Thank you so much for your comment.
      We are glad that you enjoyed the article.

      God bless!

  • Jeanne Casey Posted July 23, 2020 2:15 pm

    A lot of “weeds” are actually soil builders – dock aerates clay soil, dandelion pulls nutrients from the ground and their leaves decompose leaving those nutrients up top for plants to use, in addition to being a great nutritional plant. As an organic gardener, I don’t use any fertilizer and I practice pull and drop with a lot of “weeds” and I get a great yield.

    • The Lost Herbs Posted July 28, 2020 1:18 pm

      Hi Jeanne,

      Thank you so much for your comment and for sharing this information as well.
      We truly appreciate it.

      God bless!

  • Mel Posted July 29, 2020 1:51 pm

    What type of woodchips do you recommend

    • The Lost Herbs Posted August 14, 2020 11:58 am

      Hi Mel,

      Thank you so much for your comment.
      It is always a wise option to select organic mulch for your garden for better fertility and water retention capacity of the soil. You can consider wood chips, straw, grass clippings, chopped leaves, and compost and spread it over. Organic mulches also tend to be more nutritious and keep the weeds at bay.

      You can purchase wood chips by accessing the following link:
      shorturl.at/rsAB9

  • William R. Furlong Posted July 31, 2020 3:12 am

    What kind of wood is needed for a raised garden?

    • The Lost Herbs Posted August 14, 2020 11:58 am

      Hi William,

      Thank you so much for your comment.

      The wood to use for a raised bed is your decision. Here are some options: Cedar and redwood are naturally water-resistant but can be expensive and hard to find. Hemlock, fir and pine are suitable materials for raised beds but aren’t very long-lasting.

      God bless!

  • Burt Posted August 19, 2020 6:09 pm

    Another thing to keep in mind with organic mulches is that, while they do take some N from the soil, the microorganisms that use the N eventually die after the mulch composts away and the N is returned to the soil. So yes fresh mulch takes away N but it eventually is returned!

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  • Mark Rounds Posted February 20, 2021 4:35 am

    I was planning on chipping up some limbs I just cut down last week. Now I have a great use for them – organic gardening here I come.

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