What is sustainable gardening?
The phrase ‘sustainable gardening’ has been around for a while now but what exactly does it entail? Sustainable gardening is the concept of growing and maintaining a garden without the use of artificial resources such as herbicides or pesticides. Sustainable gardening is always organic and is the practice of using only natural resources such as water, soil, the landscape and the sun to grow plants, produce and flowers. If you’re a keen amateur gardener and wish to get to grips with this trend read our top tips on achieving a sustainable garden of your own :
Adding a compost heap or bin to your backyard is one of the easiest and best ways to improve the sustainability of your garden. Composting is the process by which organic wastes are broken down into simpler forms, by microorganisms such as bacteria and fungi. Throw your vegetable peelings, powdered eggshells, garden waste, coffee grounds, bark, paper and wood chippings on the compost heap to create nutrient rich soil. The composted soil can then be used to grow vegetables, flowers, shrubs and trees, as well as to maintain healthy lawns.
Grow native and climate appropriate plants for the area in which you live. If you live in an area that has an extremely hot and dry climate, grow plants that can tolerate high temperatures and droughts. If the climate in which you live experiences high rainfall, grow native plants that can survive during seasonal flooding.
The ability to conserve rain water is a great step to achieving an eco-friendly garden. Sustainable gardening is all about using only the water from either rain or runoff in order not to be wasteful. Water can be conserved using rain barrels which collect runoff from the roof of your home to be used later in the season when rain is sparse. Natural runoff rainwater is better for plants and is adds to the sustainability of your home by helping to cut your water bill.
As well as conserving rain water, you can also reuse the water drained from your home’s washing machine, sinks, baths and showers- this is known as ‘grey water’. In order to collect ‘grey water’ you will need to install a system that reroutes water from your drains to to your garden. It is important to check with your local council to see if installing a greywater system is legal in your area; as there can be a great deal of red tape in certain areas when it comes to grey water systems. It is important to use environmentally friendly cleaning products and detergents in your home when using a grey water system, to avoid saturating your garden with harsh chemicals.
Mulch is material such as bark and decaying leaves, applied to the surface of soil. Mulch works to improve the fertility and to conserve the moisture of the soil. It can also help to quash the growth of weeds, this eliminates the need to use harsh chemicals used in weed killer formulas.
Use materials such as recycled timber to form the structure for vegetable patches and garden beds, to be as eco-friendly as possible.
Hire a Oneflare Gardener
If you’re thinking about renovating your backyard and would like to transform it into a sustainable, eco-friendly paradise why not request a quote from Oneflare’s network of highly recommended gardening experts.