Tuesday, March 29, 2016

(Free) Organic Gardening Hacks

Here's a few #LifeHacks we are trying in our garden prep!

Organic Matter

Composting with Shredded Paper

Composting kitchen scraps is so important (we use the brown compost bin) but a lifestyle function we do every day -
certainly not a hack. 

What is a great (free) organic matter - shredded paper.

We've been shredding everything from unusable packing paper to tax records to junk mail and saving for the spring garden. We've spread into the edges as a weed block and into the paths to create a cushy trail that we'll toss weeds into all summer to create compost.

Where did we get this hack? Reading about worm farms

The best part, beside that worms are happy, is that the glue in the paper will reconstitute and bond together. If packed tight, like along our fence line, this acts as a natural barrier to weeds.

Composting with Wood Chips

This can also be a free hack! 

We made a deal with our favorite arborist. When in the area and with a "clean" load of chips (not all wood chips are the same - this year's batch is an awesome cedar!), we have a place to dump the entire load. 

Here are the cautions: 
  1.  Have to take the entire load. This is a lot of mulch! {Our tree guys were skeptical until they saw our property!}
  2. The arborist has to pay to dump normally, so they should be happy to give it to you. 
  3. It is not treated. We don't use around the foundation of the house! 

Composting with Cardboard

Yup, another free hack! 

We've tried using newspaper but it's so small and really a pain except in small spaces. 

We save the boxes from Natural Healing Tools, open them up and spread wood chips (left side of picture). We also have used cardboard to act as temporary weed suppression until we plant (picture; right).

This tends to last 2 years in most spots except around the wooded areas. There we find one year is about the max with any method. 

Not Free but Worth Trying

Gardeners and professional growers have been using Dr. Willard’s Water® products to ENHANCE cellular absorption of nutrients for nearly 40 years.  These growers have found that using Dr. Willard’s on plants will help stimulate plant health, growth, and yield with spectacular results.  We developed Dr. Willard’s PlantCatalyst® specifically for use on plants and PlantCatalyst® is the only Dr. Willard’s product specifically designed and government approved for use on plants.

Professional growers use, so we are going to try also! Use from soaking seeds before planting, during germination process and all summer long! 

Let us know your results and we will share this fall too!