Tread lightly, shrink your footprint, and let yourself grow with USDA Certified Organic Trees!
What is an Organic Tree?
The word “organic” is everywhere. For instance, you see it in grocery stores, stamped on our apples, and on the labels of beauty products. Even your dry cleaner might be using organic cleaning solutions these days! So, what does it mean when we say "organic trees"?
Aren't All Trees Organic?
All trees are natural, but not all meet the standards for organic certification.
Unlike the words “all-natural” or “non-toxic,” organic plant certification is judged by the USDA following strict guidelines. Say goodbye to toxic chemicals, which means fresher, healthier fruits, nuts, and other plant edibles for you! It's important to note: trees can't just become organic. They have to be grown organically, from seedling to maturity, and properly protected to maintain their organic status.
What does USDA Organically Grown mean?
- USDA Organic crops are grown exclusively on land that has gone without having non-USDA Organic approved substances applied for three years.
- No pesticides for us, please! Organically grown crops are highly regulated on what can and cannot be used for pest control—worried about harsh chemicals that have been sprayed on your plant? There is only a small number of approved synthetic chemicals that are allowed to be used. Otherwise, farmers use strict biological, mechanical, and physical management practices.
- Not just any type of seeds are used to grow and harvest organic plants: farmers can only use organic seeds or organically raised seedlings in their organic fields.
- Only the best handling is allowed! Organic and non-organic crops are not allowed to be commingled or near each other. Cross-contamination can occur, botching the organic plant’s purity due to non-organic substances that could have been sprayed on non-organic harvests; this would cause the organic plant to be considered compromised.
- Fields are carefully cultivated through crop rotation and proper tillage practices to ensure that the soil and the soil’s nutrients are kept at a happy balance. Animal manure, not sludge, is allowed to help infuse the soil with nitrogen to support the growth of the organic crops.
Organic Trees are Good for the Soil
Soil nutrition is something many of us don’t really think about. It’s dirt; what is there to worry about?
The truth is healthy soil is where it all starts! If you think about it, we eat fruits and vegetables for nutrients. And these plants get nutrients from the soil. So when your Desiree Peach Tree is growing in soil that isn’t healthy, that piece of fruit isn’t going to have as many nutrients!
Conventional farming can strip the soil of its nutrients, which leads soil to become unusable and no longer farmable. This leads to bare fields, and destroyed natural habitats.
Think of organic trees as long-term food security or gardening – the more nutritious the soil, the more nutrients our fruits and vegetables have. An added bonus is that organic soil retains more water, meaning less watering, less runoff, and few chemicals in our water supply! Clean eating, and clean drinking too!
Organic Trees Boost Biodiversity
Biodiversity is the variety of life found on earth, boosting ecosystem productivity where each species, no matter how small, all have an important role to play, from pollinating to enriching our soil. The ecosystem in organically grown areas is able to flourish!
Decades of intensive land usage have reduced habitats for wildlife. Conventional agriculture has added to biodiversity loss by using toxic chemicals, which then appear in ground and surface waters. This pollutes the natural habitats of wildlife, pollinators, fisheries, and yes, humans too!
Since organic farming uses natural practices and zero chemicals – biodiversity is able to flourish! Cultivating a better ecosystem for insects and pollinators, and in turn helping to increase our bird and animal population!
The Benefits of Organic Food
So, the million-dollar question – is eating organic better for you?
The answer is YES! It turns out that removing harmful chemicals like pesticides, hormones, or artificial coloring actually makes food more nutritious. Studies have shown an increase in vitamins and nutrients in organic fruit; 20-40% higher levels of antioxidants in organic fruits and vegetables.
With richer soil and no chemicals, these fruits and vegetables are able to reach their full flavor of natural sweetness and taste. As a result, organic even tastes better!
Organic farming has sprung up drastically in importance, spreading worldwide the philosophy of enriching the soil we stand upon.
Benefitting the gardener, enhancing biodiversity, preserving nature’s wildlife, and a true direction for protecting our environment. Choosing organic trees on your property, whether they are fruit, nut, ornamental, or shade trees, begins with their soil and cultivates the roots of change in your backyard.
Take one big tree step for your garden and one giant leap towards a greener world!
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