The principles of growing vegetables, herbs and fruit 'organically' - or growing anything else in this way come to that - are as old as gardening itself. Only our approach to the subject has changed to any extent. Perhaps we ought to look at just what is meant by 'organic', before we pull the concept to pieces. Where the word comes from in relation to growing plants is anyone's guess because it does not really mean anything. It does, though, convey an idea - that the plants are grown completely without the aid of modern chemicals. However, a line has to be drawn somewhere between what is sensible and in line with good plant husbandry, and what is pig-headed dogma. There are distinct similarities between organic gardening and vegetarians, and that is not meant unkindly. Both have rather blurred lines of detraction between what is 'allowed' and what is not.