I don't read very many organic gardening blogs. I find I pick up more useful gardening tips from reading organic farming research and organic gardening books.
Most blogs just seem to be covering gardening topics that I'm not really interested in, which is fine - I tend to lean slightly towards the ecological side of gardening rather than the aesthetic side, and to advanced soil building and food growing techniques rather than the basics.
But it is too bad few of the blogs I've found are talking about the most important factors that make for a vibrant, healthy organic garden. Here are 5 important organic gardening topics you'll hardly see covered in detail...
- The Soil Food Web. I think it's gaining in popularity, but still off the radar of every blog I've come across. More and more, people do list microorganisms as one of the benefits of compost, but there's little detail on the importance of all of the interactions of these organisms in the soil and just how vital this is for everything that happens in the garden. And I know microbial inoculants like compost tea and EM are becoming a little more popular, but I haven't seen them enter the mainstream vocabulary much yet.
- Balancing Nutrient Ratios. I've never seen anyone talk about the importance of balancing the ratios of specific nutrients such as calcium and magnesium in the soil, except in the occasional newsletter/article put out by an organic soil lab or Acres U.S.A. But bloggers aren't talking about it, I think because it's a bit complicated. What they do talk about is how to make your own dry organic fertilizer blends, which can be a bad idea (and a mistake I made when I first started organic gardening, because it sure is a fun concept to blend your own fertilizer).
- Increasing Nutrient Density. There is certainly some vague talk on the web about organic fertilizing, but not much on the specific goal of increasing brix and overall nutrient density of your plants, which should be one of the main goals of fertilizing your organic vegetable garden. That requires specific organic fertilizers, microbial inoculants and biostimulants used at appropriate times. For example, boron can be really useful, if you need it, applied in tiny amounts when your plants are moving from vegetative growth to fruiting.
- Landscape Health Management. There are many blog posts on how to create your own organic pesticides, and there are even allusions to how healthy plants can better defend themselves against pests. But that's not the whole story. The truth is that optimally healthy organic plants don't get attacked in the first place. Nobody is talking about that. You have to really get into the research to find it, and most people don't do that, but we've known this for decades, and you'd think it would have trickled down by now. The gardening implications are huge.
- Energy. I certainly don't blame people for skipping this organic gardening topic because it is definitely an "alternative" subject, but I bet it will become the norm this century. I'm referring to biodynamic gardening, paramagnetism, quantum physics and all of the other little niches that compose energy. My wife and I have studied it with respect to human health, and I've only scratched the surface of the applications in organic gardening.
Fortunately, I will not only cover these organic gardening topics this year, but focus on them. If you consider yourself an organic gardener and if these topics appeal to you, I hope you'll stay tuned.
Let me know in the comments below which of the above topics you most want to learn about, and also if you find any blogs that do a good job of covering them.