Saturday, July 28, 2012

Organic Garden

From "Thy Kingdom Come" - May 2012 - a publication of the
Association of the Covenant People, Burnaby, B.C. Canada.



There are many benefits to growing your own food, and the
benefits grow exponentially when your garden is organic. Eating
foods that are pesticide free and grown in nutrient-rich soils is
so much better for you, (the way that God had intended us to
eat), and you have the satisfaction of eating the fruits of your
own labour. Plus you are doing your small part to enrich
the earth around you. But, the most noticeable difference will be
the taste of the food. Once you have eaten organically grown
mouthwatering fruits and vegetables, I guarantee you will never
go back to store bought!

Growing your own food will not only be healthier for you, but
also save on your grocery bill. The cost of seeds is very little
compared to the cost of buying fruits and vegetables from your
grocery stores.

A garden does require a lot of work and effort to maintain. But
an organic garden should be therapeutic, and should be enjoyed,
rather than thought of as a chore. It truly is getting back to

When talking about foods that are organic, whether it be animal
(beef, chicken, etc.) vegetable, fruit, or herbs, we need to
understand what organic means. With animals, they must not have
been treated with antibiotics, growth hormones, or feed made from
animal byproducts. They must have been fed organic feed for at
least a year, and have access to the outdoors. Food is considered
organic if it hasn't been genetically modified or irradiated,
does not contain sewage sludge or synthetic ingredients and has
not been contaminated with synthetic chemicals used as

So what do we need to know about organic gardening, and how do we
get started?

The first thing to be considered is the choice of produce.
Research your crop choices; make sure they are ideal for your
climate and region. Plants that are adapted to your climate will
not only thrive better, but will require less care. First-time
gardeners might want to begin with easy-to-grow varieties, such
as beets, carrots, garlic, herbs, kale, potatoes, tomatoes and

When considering a location for your garden, choose an area that
will have a minimum of six hours of sunshine, preferably as much
in the morning as possible. This will dry the leaves of the
plants quickly after the morning dew, which tends to help stifle

Start with a smaller garden, one that is an easy size to
maintain, allowing yourself room to expand in the future, if
desired. Loosen the soil with a shovel first, then a garden fork
or tiller 6 to 8 inches deep to break up all of the clumps. The
most important thing for your organic garden is to feed the soil
with nutrients that will in turn feed your plants. It is
important to remember that plants are fed by the microorganisms
in the soil, and that pesticides can destroy them. In an organic
garden, you are nourishing these microorganisms.
An alternative method is to build upon the grass, rather than
digging into it, creating a layered effect. Use newspaper as
the first layer, then straw, grass clippings, shredded leaves,
etc. All of these items break down to create rich, fertile soil.
No need to dig, just cut holes into it and plant right through

Composting is an easy way to get your plants the nutrients they
need by continuously adding organic matter to the soil, rather
than feeding plants directly. You can purchase compost in bulk or
build your own compost pile away from the garden.
The 2 main components of a compost are carbon-rich "brown"
materials, such as those listed earlier in the raised garden, and
nitrogen-rich "green" materials, such as vegetable peelings and
fruit rinds, pulp from juicers, etc. (but no meat or dairy
products). Manure from cows, horses and chickens is also very
rich in nitrogen. The other two important ingredients are water
and air. Your compost needs to be kept wet, (but not dripping)
and air is absolutely necessary for the bacteria doing the hard
composting work. You will know when the compost is working,
digging into it you will find it alive with worms and your leaves
have turned to crumbly black material.

Keep the soil in your organic garden covered throughout the
gardening season with mulch, and once again grass clippings,
straw, leaves and shredded bark are ideal for this. Mulch
continues to feed the soil as it decomposes, preserves moisture
in the soil, and also blocks the sunlight from reaching the
weeds, preventing most weeds from coming through the surface. Be
sure to keep the mulch away from the plant stems as it can burn
the stems.

Plant mint or spearmint herbs around your garden to keep insects
away naturally.

Keep in mind this is just a general overview of organic
gardening. Some gardeners might prefer different methods than the
ones I've discussed. If you want to start your own garden, be
sure to do a little research on your own first.

For those people who can't grow a garden, for whatever reason,
make an attempt to buy organically whenever possible. Some foods,
such as fruits: apples, cherries, peaches, raspberries and
strawberries and vegetables: celery, potatoes and spinach are
foods you should avoid unless grown organically. No matter how
well you wash them, it is nearly impossible to eliminate the
pesticides they have absorbed.
Readers have expressed an interest in writing to Rick Coupland.
He can be contacted at


For sure if you are in the situation where you can have an
organic garden you should. Certainly organic foods are more
healthy for you; it is the way the Eternal God intended for us to
keep us healthy. And organic foods usually taste better, though I
have found some, such as recent organic strawberries I bought
were not very good in taste at all. We do need to keep in mind
that fortunately God did build into our bodies (normal healthy
bodies) the power for our body system to combat chemicals of one
kind or another. Some chemicals may indeed to natural chemicals,
and some are of human invention. Some health fanatics either do
not see this truth or they deliberately refuse to admit it. For
those who are in the situation of not being able to buy (for
whatever reason) organic foods, our basic healthy body can fight
off a certain amount of chemicals. There is much more to health
than JUST organic eating. You may be able to have a diet of 100
percent organic foods, yet if not obeying the other laws of
health (little stress, good exercise, enough sleep, relaxation,
enjoyable hobbies, peace of mind, contentment, smiling and happy,
pleasant working environment) you will still end up being
unhealthy, getting sick, and looking much older than your birth

Keith Hunt

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