Group 3---katie lau, katherien chu, joanna ng

The most important thing in the garden is the soil; if without good soil there will be no good products. There are 3 main types of soil: clay, sandy and loam. Clay soils have small particles that hold moisture and nutrients. They warm up and cool down slowly. Sandy soils have larger particles. They change temperature, are light in texture, and drain water and nutrients quickly. Adding compost to sandy soil helps it hold moisture and conserve nutrients. Loam is a soil type that is the combination of sandy and clay soil therefore it is also an organic soil. It holds nutrients and moisture, and yet drains well. Most likely we will want to work with loam soil. We can get this soil in Home depot or wal mart.

There are some plant that is easy to take care of, like Boston ivy and Morning glory. We are planning to put a fence onto the wall and plant them on the ground, and they will grow very healthy. They are both perennial plants, which means they can live more then two years. Then the OCADer can enjoy the beautiful view that ivy and morning glory created.

Organic Fertilizers VS Lab-made Fertilizers
Organic fertilizers are by products or the remains of natural things. These by products range from manure, to animal blood. These products may sound scary or disgusting but they are a part of the cycle of life. Some of these organic fertilizers can be found at home, something we would throw out, one of which is egg shells. We can sprinkle egg shells onto the soil of our plants to help fertilize them. Organic fertilizers can be used as nutrients for the plants and can help them grow. When we use Organic Fertilizers we improve the amount of minerals that are in the soil, making the soil more capable of holding water for the plants. The organic fertilizers provides more places for micro organisms to grow, so they help break down the nutrients in the soil, thus increasing soil quality. The organic fertilizers make for stronger soil structures, resulting in more oxygen getting into the soil. The organic fertilizers also are slow to have their nutrients leached away.
Lab-made fertilizers may have higher concentrations of nutrients, but that’s all they have. They also costly.The Lab-made fertilizers usually cannot provide all the things that Organic fertilizers do. The worst of the things that Lab-made fertilizers do is they do not prevent leaching as much as Organic fertilizers. When nutrients are leached away into the water supply they have many adverse effects on the amphibious creatures. The chemicals in plant fertilizers also help algae grow.. When algae grows uncontrollably it takes up a lot of oxygen in the water, because plants need to breath too. When this happens, the fish in the water end up dying because they don’t have enough oxygen. When there is too much algae it blocks out the sun and other amphibious creatures die too.

Organic Pesticides VS Lab-made Pesticides
When we use pesticides to kill bugs we affect the natural cycle of life. When we use Lab-made pesticides we are killing all the bugs in the area. These pesticides kill all of the bugs all right, but they are killing the bugs that help our plants grow. Insects help stimulate plant growth by drinking nectar or by pollinating the plants. Lab-made pesticides also seep into the soil and cause pollute the drinking water. Pesticides also are harmful to pets and animals so it is not good to use Lab-made pesticides. Organic Pesticides wont affect other organisms and they wont pollute the environment.

We can make organic pesticides easily many ways. We can use exhausted ground coffee beans by leaving it out in the sun and stirring it everyday for ten days, after that we can use it to kill insects by sprinkling it into the soil. The coffee beans can also be left in the sun for 3 or 4 days, then mixed with soil to produce pest repelling soil. This is because the caffeine in coffee beans destroys the insects nervous systems, so the insects will stay away from it. This is evident in coffee farms, coffee farms have very little insects because of the effect caffeine has on them. Another thing that can be used to kill pests are garlic, pepper, onion, and ginger. One or some of these can be added to a small amount of soap water to kill germs and fungus.

We are also planning to form a club name Green Club. Students in OCAD can join this group. In this group, you will learn some knowledge of environment, how to plant flowers and vegetables, learn how to make organic fertilizer and pesticide. Moreover, we will create some events, for example, in Christmas, students could plant ever-green, Christmas trees, and decorate them. The knowledge that students learn not only apply for OCAD but also their house, or even the community. It is because through the learning process, they might interest in planting stuff, so they would willing to plant stuff maybe in their front yard or backyard.

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