You can just feel Spring in the air.   Time to get working in the garden and make some decisions. Lately, I’ve been researching organic gardening in Chicago which can be difficult to navigate on a first try but not hard to overcome.   Even those who have experience find organic gardening hard to do.

First, let me explain organic gardening.   Basically, you are not using any chemicals for fertilizer and pesticide. If you’ve been spoiled by the convenience of gardening products, this can be a transition.   When making the switch, you have to make your own fertilizer and rely on a natural process to get rid of pests.

The first rule in organic gardening is to check your soil.   Make sure it’s healthy. All gardeners know this, but few really understand what it means. Nourishing the soil and caring for it will take care of your plants providing the nutrients your plants need.

Adding nutrients to the soil comes from fertilizers. Organic gardeners create their own fertilizer from food scraps made into compost, which can also include dried leaves, remains of plants and animal waste if you have pets. Not the most appetizing for us but sweet nectar for your plants.

As much as your plants like fertilizer so do pests. Organic gardeners do not use pesticides like ordinary gardening and farming. They rely upon natural processes, which you can manipulate ocassionally and makes organic plants more susceptible to pests. Experts advise being vigilant and at the first sight of a problem, take care of it before it becomes something that you can’t control.

On second thought, I might start with an element of organic gardening and work my way into a full-fledged organic garden next year.

Maggie Finegan, ABR, Move with Maggie Chicago Real Estate Team

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