An important aspect of organic farming is observation and learning.

Piece taken from The Organic Grow Book written by Karel Schelfhout.

Many customers are hooked by appealing labels and promises. And yet it is far more important to know what, exactly, the package or bottle sporting them contains. Ingredients such as coconut fibres and peat moss may be organic, but are you really sure you want to use them likewise, perlite is popular with many gardeners even though it isn’t organic and its use may or may not be justified. And what about blood meal and other products derived from animal corpses? Since they come from dead animals, many vegans would rather not use them.

Take your time. Observe. Cultivate a critical mind. Reflect. Learn.

You may have left chemicalfertilizers behind, butorganic products canbe problematic as well. As anorganic gardener, you should know whatyou’re using. You decide whether or not the product fulfils your require-ments. Have a critical mind, read labels, and use internet to find informa-tion about the composition of an item that you may have doubts about.

You’re the gardener: the choice is yours.

The information provided in the Organic Grow Book will help you cultivate a critical mind. The green attitude means that you decide what ‘organic’ means for you. Some growers, totally taken with these reflections, will go so far as to adopt a biodynamics-inspired approach.

1.2 Yield Ever since he switched over, Karel has been answering the questions of mainstream growers who are thinking about going organic. Those who have already taken the plunge have questions too. For example, many people wonder if it can produce as much as ‘classic chemicals’ do. The question is revealing in and of itself…

Why opt for organic gardening then?

Maybe we don’t want to keep eating food poisoned by synthetic pesticides and other chemical substances, for example. Or perhaps we no longer wish to participate in the destruction of natural areas and the rest of MotherEarth. If these motivations inspire you, the size of your harvest may not be the most important thing.

The organic gardener’s priority is quality, not quantity

Organic gardeners’ ideals are loftier. High-quality crops are grown without toxic substances, for example. Better flavour. A more balanced planet and so much more. A mediocre crop, quickly grown, is rejected in favour of superior quality, which takes a little longer. As we’ve said, growing organic is a mindset.

Bye-bye, cows stuffed with hormones and flavorless vegetables swollen with chemical treatments and undesirable substances. When you go green, health, quality, and sustainability are what really matter. Nevertheless, we can reassure those of you who wonder about yield, especially in relation to indoor gardening.

Certain organic techniques developed to be used indoors will allow the average gardener to produce as much as chemicals would.

Depending on the grower, the approaches described in this book may or may not lead to harvests comparable to those grown with synthetic substances. But experienced gardeners can look forward to an excellent crop, whichever methods they chooses.