Laying the foundation of good gardening

What lies at the bottom actually tops the list of essentials for gardening. A look at this ingredient, following World Soil Day (December 5)

Before taking this step — the very first — it is necessary to ask ourselves three basic questions.

retain enough moisture ?

If the soil is too clayey or hardened, the roots would not spread and cannot breathe easily. The soil should also retain moisture and at the same time, make for water stagnation. In other words, the soil should not be too dry or too soggy. Moreover, if the soil is bare and does not have the necessary nutrients — Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Pottasium — it will not help in growth of the plant.

An ideal potting mix would be about having a combination of garden soil or red soil, cocopeat and composted cowdung or vermi compost along with a few micro nutrients.

The ratio to be followed here is — 1:1:1

For a 12×12 grow bag which would hold 15 kg of potting mix, we can prepare the mix in the following proportions.

The combination of all of the above would serve as a well-balanced power-packed nutritious feed for the plant. The active microbiological processes help the plant roots absorb the required nutrients and make for overall healthy plant growth , flowering and fruiting resulting in a good yield.

Nutrients like Amirthskaraisal, Jeevamirtham, Gana Jeevamirtham, Panchagavya and waste decomposer should be administered periodically on a calendarised basis as foliar spray and also as a soil applicator.

(Raghu Kumar is an admin of the Facebook group Organic Garden Foundation)

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