Harvesting homegrown vegetables & fruits is a joyful activity. But it becomes healthier when you grow it organically because sometimes the application of various pesticides, fertilizers, hormones, fungicides can be harmful to our health if we do not take proper precautions. Apart from all, it is also said that organic food is more nutritious than vegetables & fruits grown with a lot of chemicals. But we can not jump all of a sudden from chemical/synthetic product based kitchen garden to purely organic garden. Well, it’s possible but very difficult because we are not expert. So I started my journey towards homegrown organic vegetables & fruits with a step by step method. It is a journey loaded with happiness.
I am starting following this method step by step to achieve 100% pure organic food.
Step 1: Start with Less
First I reduce the overall amount of chemical fertilizers/pesticide/fungicide/hormones etc application on my plants. It is an important step and anybody can achieve it. I chose last summer (2020) for following this step and I reduced a significant amount of chemical products application on my plants. I used only 2 packets (500 gm each) of mixed chemical fertilizer during the whole summer season. I started applying homemade neem extracts water as a pesticide. I got a satisfactory result. But my overall gardening cost slightly increased because of the extra amount of vermicompost which is little expensive.
Step 2: Stop Chemical Pesticides
The main chemical input what causes significant health impact is a pesticide. So during this winter season, I decided to stop using chemical pesticides. Instead of chemical pesticide, I have started using many types of homemade organic pesticide. I bought 250 ml neem oil from an online store. I am using various leaves (what cows do not eat like neem/akondo/aakh etc) which are easily available in our locality to make pesticide. I just dip those into the water for a month. I am using a 2-litre bottle for this purpose. Then I will strain to get its water only. Though I stopped using chemical pesticide but I am continuing using a minimum amount of other chemical items like fertilizers & fungicide.
Step 3: Use Chemicals as Medicines
I am going to avoid all chemical/synthetic items but use only when a plant is dying in next summer season. But before I would start, I need to gain experience of many things during this winter season. I am planning to make adequate amount of organic fertilizer from kitchen waste & garden waste. This will will help me to reduce cost of buying vermicompost in next summer season. I will maintain a minimum stock of chemical/synthetic fertilizers / pesticides / fungicides as plants medicines. I will only use those items whenever I will see a plant is dying even after taking all needed actions organically.
Step 4: Grow 100% organically
If everything will go as per planning then I will definitely be able to grow vegetables & fruits 100% organically. I hope I will achieve it and I will never need to buy chemical items for my plants.
Though it is said that organic food is healthier and environment friendly and many researchers also found it according to their researches. But still, many researchers & scientists said that they did not find enough evidence to say that organic food is nutritious than inorganic food. So it is totally an individual’s choice based on their food preference. But no doubt it is environment friendly and avoiding chemical/synthetic fertilizers/pesticide is always a good step for every kitchen gardener.