Ever wondered why it is so important to grow and eat organic food?
An organic gardener works in co-operation with nature.
Growing produce without chemicals, from organic seed, and saving the seed each
year to be in alignment with nature’s cycles.
Organic gardeners work with the soil naturally, and don’t use chemicals that could harm either the organisms in the soil or the wildlife around them.
If all 15 million UK gardens were cared for organically, this would create a healthier, more sustainable environment for our families, plants and wildlife.
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Better for the planet
Saying no to chemical fertilisers and pesticides, (which come from burning fossil fuels) reduces environmental pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.
Instead, we build fertile soils naturally, using nitrogen-restoring plants and compost made from kitchen waste and garden cuttings. In no-dig gardening this is laid as mulch on the soil.
These methods ensure that the carbon which plants return to the soil, stays in the soil, which is vital in the fight against climate change.
Better for nature and wildlife
Organic gardens provide food and homes for bees, birds, butterflies and a variety of other wildlife. This prevents the decline of our wonderful fellow creatures and of the plants they so much depend on. Pollinators enable plants to fruit, set seed and breed. This in turn provides food and habitat for a range of other creatures.
So the health of our natural ecosystems is fundamentally linked to the health of our bees and other pollinators. The drivers of biodiversity loss are many, but numerous scientific studies have highlighted the major role pesticides play. Pesticides have found their way into our food, our soils, our rivers and our wildlife. Around half of pesticides used in the UK are fungicides which, used repeatedly, kill the microbial life essential to the soil ecosystem and affect all that depend on it.
Better for People
Healthy plants come from healthy soils. Damaged soils cannot supply the nutrients plants need, meaning less nutrients in our foods. Recent studies found that organically produced crops (cereals, fruit and vegetables) were more nutrient dense and had up to 68% more antioxidants than non-organic.
Organic foods have lower concentrations of pesticides and the toxic heavy metal cadmium. Organic farmers are allowed to use ‘natural’ pesticides (made from plants) but home growers can be completely pesticide free.