nellie
Newly Registered
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed May 04, 2005 1:15 am

Starting out - Organic Gardening in Australia

Hi everyone

I'm new to this forum and also new to Organic Gardening. I was more or less introduced to it after finding out I have an intollerance to wheat, gluten, dairy and sugar... doesn't leave much but veges to eat! And I became very conscious of the toxins I was putting into my body...

I have recently become very interested (considering a possibly future in it aswell). First steps first - I am about to start my own garden to see how I go - but I barely know where to start!

Can anyone help?

Also, does anyone know of any good resources for me to get information from? I live in Australia and would like to know what veges are best to plant at this time - and what I can grow anyway (ie what fruit & vege I'm best off growing). It is coming into winter here...

Thanks in advance for your help!
I have a dream... help me make it a reality! :)

opabinia51
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 4659
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

Can't really give you any direct advice on Australia because I live in North America but, I can say that the fundamentals of organic gardening are that you do not use any molecules that do not have carbon as a backbone. That being said, plastics and many commercial pesticides have a carbon based structure so, you also have to be choosy about what you use.

In organic gardening you want to feed to soil and not the plant. Therefore, do not use salt based fertiilzers like the 6-8-6 and 20-20-20 and what not that you will find in Nurseries. Make mulches and compost from leaves, manure, seaweed, greens and so on. Also, use fertilizers made from seaweed, blood meal, Fish parts and so on.
You can also grow vegetables and other plants using companion planting. (Just look up companion planting on Google.) And you can plant plants in your vegetable garden that will attract beneficial insects to your garden that will prey on insect and microbe pests.
The key in organic gardening is having a healthy, active soil with bacteria, fungi, worms and insects living in it. Check out my threads in the forums on such topics and look at Newt's threads as well. There is a plethora of information there that will keep you going for quite some time.

The Helpful Gardener
Mod
Posts: 7493
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 2:17 am
Location: Colchester, CT

You are in the best possible hands as far as organic gardening goes, Nellie.

Opa is a fountain of knowledge on organic soil, and soil is 80% of the battle...get that right and the rest is pretty simple.

Scott

grandpasrose
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1651
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2005 4:21 pm
Location: Quesnel, BC, Canada - Zone 4a

Thanks for that pointer Ben! :wink:

Val
VAL (Grandpa's Rose)

opabinia51
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 4659
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

Hello everyone,

I have split the conversation on plant hardiness zones into another thread with that name. It can be found in the organic garden forum.

Anonymous

starting out

:D
Hi my name is Suzi and I live in NZ. My partner & I are beginning a garden much like yourself and have read & researched loads of materials..I can highlt recommend Linda Woodrows Home Permaculture book..its for the southern hemisphere as well and the beauty of it is all the basic hard work has been done..tried and tested if you like. I would like your views on starting out..Good luck. Suzi

opabinia51
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 4659
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

Thanks for the information Suzi! Feel free to add your advise or ask any questions at any time.

jstr12
Full Member
Posts: 46
Joined: Mon Jul 17, 2006 8:03 pm
Location: Washington, U.S.A., Zone 6

The soil and bug life is everything and evrything has already been said so i can't say much else!

jstr :D
Jstr =D

opabinia51
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 4659
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

You are definately correct about the soil flora and fauna JSTR, that is exactly what good soil is and what it has. This is why this current herbicide/pesticide/salt based fertilizer paradigm that North America is on is so bad. All of these things kill the flora and fauna in the soil and degrade the nutrients contained in the soil.

Anonymous

I must sound repetative... :oops: but I can only talk about the way im going about our plot of 'raw' paddock... :roll:
I have put my flock of chickens to work.. :D They are FANTASTIC workers, they go about their work with SUCH gusto..their work entails turning over the top of the paddock grass, getting to the surface of the existing soil, then I put on food scraps, old dried out straw bedding from their coops, the rabbit's hutch, seaweed tea and let them do their work..they turn everything over, scratching about with the ducks and goats..takes away the back breaking work I would have to do..also they don't damage the existing soils structure as I would with a fork if I had to dig everything in, it takes them two weeks to clear an area..tall weeds etc and all and turn it into a finely seived well on the way to be a composted bed. I am constantly seeking food scraps ( the local children are great for this..they collect bucket fulls and get rewarded with egg hunts as my chickens free range..another little job I need to do is make a pen so I can keep them in the place I want them to work..I offer to clean out horse stalls of people I know who don't use antibiotics etc aand give it to the chickens... :lol: I chuck on my garden cuttings also...ok IM done.... :wink:

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