Fertilizing Your Organic Garden
Fertilizing your organic garden is a bit like mulching because in addition to feeding your plants, natural fertilizers often also protect your soil. But there are additional aspects to the use of fertilizers which may be available naturally or commercially. Simply defined, organic fertilizer simply involves placing matter, whether organic or inorganic, around your plants.
Whether your garden is subject to heavy rains or at the risk of weed infestation, a natural mulch-style fertilizer provides protection and nutrients needed to supplement the natural growth processes of your organic garden vegetables. In addition, it also regulates the temperature of the soil and can also render aesthetic appeal to the garden because it helps to improve the ground texture and overall appearance of your organic garden.
If you made effective use of a natural mulch in your garden, less watering is required because it will help the soil retain water. As a result, the plants will also experience better growth levels and moisture retention. Although a good mulch helps in weed control, it does not directly fight, or ward off, weeds. It helps more as a filler for bare areas that are at higher risk of weed infestation. Also, existing weeds can die down as they are covered by, and surrounded with, mulch.
Be advised, however, in the case of organic mulches, bacteria tends to eat up the much-needed nitrogen, so, in some cases, you might be required to add additional nitrogen. A few materials you can use for mulching can include lawn clippings, compost mises, leaves, straw, sawdust, wood chips. These are examples of organic materials for mulching. If you prefer to go with inorganic mulch, it often works better on plants placed on "hills".
When choosing to fertilize your soil via mulch, you may need to be more careful with your organic garden. You might be required to water more frequently when you are using inorganic materials, and you must also watch out for an increased tendency for plants to wilt because the ground cover tends to be more crowded.
One way to help improve your fertilization efforts is by testing your soil. You don't want to buy fertilizer, natural or otherwise, by the bulk, only to realize that it is not the right fertilizer for your soil. The best way to make sure that you are using the best fertilizer is by testing a sample of soil taken from your garden.
You don't just throw fertilizer out there and walk away. Sometimes there's more you have to do once it's on the ground. You should be willing to budget for high quality fertilizer if you want to be a good organic gardener, especially as a beginner. There are some fertilizers used at the beginning of the planting process which need not be maintained all throughout your gardening season. Make sure that you are getting your money's worth by using the right fertilizer and using it properly.
Whether you use natural fertilizers or inorganic mulches in your soil, the more natural organic matter is going to be the best source of fertilization for your plant, as it will work closely with the natural growth process of plants. Avoid introducing too much intervention in your soil at one time so that the plants will get used to the material you are using.