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Anchor - Natural and Organic Practices

Natural and Organic Practices

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No use of chemical pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers will ever be used. Instead, Purple Leaf uses natural and organic soil builders and fertilizers to create a healthy and whole soil environment as a strong foundation for your plants and their environment. Chemical use within the environment is strongly discouraged because of its carcinogenic effect; it will harm humans, pets and native wildlife. Pesticide use also reduces pollinator populations significantly. Another problem with the use of chemicals in the garden is that runoff, from the land where chemicals are used, filters into the water table, entering our streams and rivers, then ending up in our oceans. This process hurts our diverse ecosystem that controls the oceans, the weather and our planet.

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Some people equate organic practices to doing nothing and assuming that it means they are being organic. While not applying chemicals is one possitive result, using organic practices means so much more. Purple Leaf is a company that believes in using horticulture science in combination with nature to culltivate, plant and grow ornamental gardens.

First and most important is soil health. Soil is the life-blood of plant health; without the proper soil and nutrients, plants will not grow and perform properly. Soil needs to be natural and healthy for the environment to respond correctly. Soil is made up of organic matter, minerals, gases, liquids, and organisms that together support life. In short, soil is a mixture of broken down minerals (food) for living microorganisms (bacteria and fungus). 

One of the most important types of fungi in the soil is called mycorrhiza. The definition of mycorrhiza is a fungus which grows in association with the roots of plants in a symbiotic relationship. This means mycorrhizal fungi and plants are dependant on eachother. For example, Pine trees depend on mycorrhiza fungus for nutrient uptake and without it they will die.

In knowing this, Pine trees can be successfully cared for in garden cultivation.

Since the relationship between the fungus and the plant is symbiotic, both members of the relationship obtain a benefit from each other. In short, the fungus feeds the plant and the plant feeds the fungus. 

 

Mycorrhiza fungus forms a rather large web of white connected strands that fill most, if not all, of the soil in our environment, and will transport nutrients long distances. Fungus, in general, are extremely delicate organisms and thus can easily be damaged or killed, so the use of organic practices is the best way to help this delicate ecosystem proliferate.

Organic soil builder fertilizers are an important part of "adding back" to the life of the soil. We always need to feed our soils if we want to keep our plants healthy and blooming. Plants are heavy feeders and will take up as many nutrients as they can. Thus, leaving the soil somewhat depleated. We, as avid gardeners, need to be aware of this and feed our gardens on a regular basis. In nature, this feeding is taken care of because there is no clean-up and thus nature breaks down organic matter into its elemental form (organic fertilizer). Purple Leaf will always fertilize a new garden quite heavily from the get-go and will moniter the soil and plant health from then on. Nature will tell us what it needs by showing us symptoms, both good and bad. We can use this to understand the garden's health status.

When the garden is planted and cared for properly, nature will do the rest. This is the time for enjoyment and exploration. Plants will begin to grow, flower, and attract pollinators. They will set fruits and seed heads; again feeding more of nature. Enjoy walking into your garden at different times of the day and year to see what the environment is attracting. Relax, knowing that you are a part of the natural world and are helping nature continue its journey.

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