Tag Archives: Residential Landscaping

How to Create Your Own Organic Garden

chili peppersMany people (myself included) have wanted to venture into the organic world for quite some time; however; we often become quickly overwhelmed when we notice just how expensive it can be.  Luckily, now with growing season finally underway, we can create a delicious produce garden that is free from pesticides and toxic chemicals while still having fun.

Don’t know where to start?  It is actually quite easy to do yourself as it takes very little effort.  In order to avoid becoming overwhelmed early on it is best to remember that you can start small.  For most beginning organic gardeners it is often recommend to start by using just one or two plants.  For those wanting a large organic garden it is possible to hire someone to plant and maintain it.

While an organic garden does require a bit for effort than a traditional garden, it is definitely a worthwhile venture for those attempting to foster a more holistic, environmental friendly lifestyle.  An organic garden requires the use of absolutely no synthetic fertilizers or pesticides. But, how do I ward off pests, and bolster my plants health without these?  Read on for specific tips and ideas.

Tips for Creating the Perfect Organic Garden

Tip #1 – Preparing the Soil

In order to achieve the best results with your new organic garden, you’ll want to make sure you thoroughly prepare the soil, in order to properly condition it.  Some of the best ways to ensure good healthy soil is to get it tested and to ensure it has plenty of organic matter.  You can do this by mixing in compost, leaf, grass clippings and manure.

Tip #2 – Choosing the Right Plants

It really pays when choosing the right plants, or seedlings, to make sure you’ll actually eat what you’re planning on planting.  Otherwise you’re taking up valuable space for something you might never put on your plate.  When selecting plants it is additionally important to ensure that they will thrive in Arizona by checking the USDA’s Hardiness Zones.

Make sure to only purchase plants that have been raised without chemical fertilizers and pesticides.  You can typically find these at your local farmer’s market and nurseries that carry organic friendly plants.  Some plants such as sunflowers, coriander, dill, sweet peas, squash and cucumbers do better if they are grown from seeds.

Tip #3 – Plant Crops in Wide Beds

For the best results when harvesting plants, such as vegetables and flowers, you should group them tightly together in a wide bed that you know won’t be trampled on.  Raised beds work great!  This tip reduces the amount of weeding and watering you’ll need to provide your organic garden with.  In addition, this helps to maintain the proper amount of nutrients and compost, as well as promote air circulation.

Tip #4 – Water in the Morning

Tip #5 – Weeding & Mulching

Tip #6 – Protect Plants from Insect Infestations

One of the best ways to protect your plants from insect infestations naturally is to foster a healthy amount of natural predators such as frogs, lizards and birds.  Ladybugs work to!  You can also use nets and row covers, but plan on needing to change them often, due to our harsh summer temperatures.  Organic solutions include horticultural oils, insecticidal soaps and hot pepper sprays.

Tip #7 – Harvesting the Fruits of Your Labor

Salsa Lover’s Organic Garden Recipe IdeaTomatoes

Plant the following to make awesome organic salsa from scratch:

  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Jalapeno Peppers
  • Cilantro
  • Onions
  • Tomatillos

 

Spring Cleaning the Yard

 

The results of spring cleaning the yard.
The results of spring cleaning the yard.

With spring on the horizon, many homeowners are finding themselves revamping their homes, cleansing them from the dreary effects of winter.  This time of year brings with it the opportunity to throw open the windows, let some much needed air in and make our homes both beautiful and healthy.  But spring cleaning doesn’t end inside the home!

Your home’s exterior can benefit from some much needed spring cleaning as well.  Sure your yard’s growing season may have been on a hiatus, but that doesn’t mean there’s no work to do.  You may notice your yard has accumulated quite a bit of debris and dead growth which will need to be cleared prior to your new growing seasons’ start.

With attention to detail and the assistance of Elite Landscaping and Sprinkler Repair by your side, you can restore your yard’s beauty, and ensure a successful growing season.  Here are just some of the methods you can take advantage of when beginning spring cleaning the yard maintenance:

STEP #1: OUT WITH THE OLD

Did this winter’s wind and cold do a number on your yard?  Then you may want to start your spring cleaning efforts by taking out your forgotten rakes and uncovering any plants that may have been sheltered during the winter.  You will additionally want to clean out all of your planting beds to ensure the removal of built-up debris.

As you are removing debris and leaves, make sure to pay close attention to detail, as to prevent harming any tender new growth.  You will also want to prune any old or dead growth from your existing plants, trees and shrubbery to provide them with room to grow.  This helps shape your plants as well which can extend their lifespan.

Using a spade or a rototiller work the soil in and around the area’s where you will be placing new plants.  Tilling oxygenates the soil!  During the entire course of your spring cleaning the yard, you will want to watch for any insects so as to avoid the possibility of an infestation during your growing season.

STEP #2: IN WITH THE NEW

While spring cleaning the yard can take considerable resources it is however something you will enjoy long after its completion.  An ignored yard is not a pretty site!  Once you’ve completed all the aforementioned techniques, you can then, and only then start planting.

For the best results make sure you check the planting information on your new purchases.  Since 1982, Elite has been providing the highest quality landscaping services including spring cleaning in the yard, to the greater Phoenix area.  We work with all clients, both big and small, so call us today at (602) 340-4645 anytime you need a reliable hand.