Friday, June 15, 2012

Gardening with the Seasons Part 1 Fall

Organic Gardening my style Season/Part 1

My knowledge of organic gardening consists of growing food in relationship with how they grow and are fertilized naturally.
It all starts in the fall for me when i see leaves and branches falling from the light breezes. I see storms rolling in of the ocean and bringing with it seaweed and sea shells. i gather the last tall grasses of the field and dream of my compost. How big will i make it this year??
The fall is a great time for you to fertilize the garden with mulch. And you say what does this have to do with mushrooms??
well in the fall the leaves and twigs fall from above to the ground below creating a carpet. Well over time the natural decomposers aka fungi, microbes, and insects including worms come to the surface to feed and to pull that food back into the earth. Under this layer the mycorhizae start to grow because of the beneficial environment created. These types of fungi feed the trees and plants around them. Also the saprophytic mushrooms come to the surface to "eat" this material along with all the microbes and crawlies.



This is why it is a great time of year to mulch your garden with leaves and seaweed. Talk about slow release nutrients all winter long just waiting for you to pull back the soil in the spring and get planting. This is also a great time of year to start your compost for the following early summer. All the leaves are going to get a bit bulky on that garden bed and it is not really necessary to pile them that high unless you are really trying to protect some plants from deep freeze. So start a compost heap. Here is a recipe that goes a long way. this is made by alternating the layers starting with a layer of cardboard. If you have some or allot of other (green) material- put thin layers between all the layers.
25%grass
25%seaweed
50%leaves (mulched)
mulched means chopped up with either a mulcher/chipper or you can use a lawnmower with a bag and run over the leaves and dump the bag into a pile, or another method is to use a big drum or something and place leaves in then hit it with a weed eater- buzz this up and voila instant mulch
The fall is also a great time to add a dose of complete organic fertilizer.
I get call from local residents that I have worked with that say that they are soo happy they got me to bring that load of leaves and seaweed in my truck last fall. My garden is overgrowing with food and flowers this year!!
Give it a try folks from all over the world.

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