When you grow your own backyard organic garden, you’ll reap rewards that stretch far beyond not having to run to the store every time you need a tomato or a bit of basil. Organic gardening—in other words, growing in-ground or in a raised bed with help from Mother Nature—can benefit your wallet, your tastebuds, your body, even your peace of mind. (Want to know more about what makes a garden organic? Check out ourarticle.)
Here are 7 impressive benefits of organic gardening:
1. You know what is (and isn’t) in your food. Growing an organic garden gives you first-hand knowledge of just how that tomato traveled from starter plant (or seed) to plate. You’re in control of what’s in the soil and what, if anything, your plants are taking in besides rain and sunshine.
2. Your produce is super-fresh. Organic vegetable gardening gives you just-picked flavor perfection minutes before meals. You’ll never doubt this after you taste your first asparagus spear straight from the soil, or a sugar snap pea picked right off the trellis. As with any home garden, harvesting just a few steps away from your kitchen counter means your fruits and veggies don’t have to be trucked across the country to your local supermarket, losing nutrition, freshness, and flavor along the way.
3. You’re creating a welcoming space for birds, bees, and lots of other helpful creatures. Backyard organic gardening is a wonderful way to give back to Mother Nature. The nutrient-rich soil and diverse mix of plants in your organic garden help create an ecosystem that benefits the surrounding environment, replenishing the soil, helping prevent erosion, and nurturing a habitat for happy birds, bees, bats, and other beneficial critters.
4. You’ll save money. Sure, you could spend $5 for a couple of organic heirloom tomatoes or bag of organic greens at the supermarket. Or, you could simply walk into your backyard and pick ‘em for free. Granted, it’ll cost a few bucks to get your organic garden started, but once it starts producing, it’s all yours.
5. You’ll get some exercise. Digging in the soil, caring for your plant babies, and harvesting all that fresh goodness requires a bit of muscle movement and stretching, and that’s always a good thing! Bonus: You get your workout in the great outdoors, not in some stuffy gym.
6. You can mix things up. Whether you’re browsing for groceries online or poring over an organic seed catalog, planting your own organic garden will allow you to experience so many more veggie varieties than you’d ever find at the store. Talk about a way to banish produce boredom!
7. You’ll score major bragging rights. Whether you’re posting on Instagram or sharing your harvest with the neighbors, your organic garden will yield loads of bounty to boast about. Just imagine how great it will feel to tell the world you grew those beauties yourself!
To maximize the benefits of your organic garden, you’ll want to start with great soil and keep your plants well nourished throughout the season. The best way to do that? Plant in(for in-ground growing) or (for potted plants), or a 50-50 mixture of the two if you prefer raised beds. Enriched with aged compost, these two products provide plants and their roots with the kind of environment and nourishment they need for amazing growth—so amazing, in fact, that you’ll finish the season with up to twice the harvest (vs. unfed plants)! For best results, begin feeding with a month after planting. It instantly adds micronutrients to the soil, turning it into a perpetually well-stocked pantry for your garden.
Sure, growing organically may require a little more time than a trip to the corner store, but think of it as a small investment that grows into a big, beautiful, delicious payoff. This is one benefits package you won’t want to pass up!