The environment is fragile, and if you have a garden, you have the opportunity to contribute to the protection of the natural world.
But what does an organic garden look like, and what are its features? You may imagine a tranquil, overgrown jungle teeming with wildflowers and insects.
Today, however, even the most elegant modern garden designs can be eco-friendly thanks to a combination of ethically sound materials and innovative technology.
Recycle And Reuse Materials
The main concern is the origin, extraction, production, and installation of materials in structures, paths, walls, and patios. Using recycled materials instead is an excellent way to plant greenery.
As land reclamation yards, especially in cities, can be expensive, trawling through country yards and garbage stalls in search of resources.
Take a look at eBay.co.uk and Freecycle.org – tin baths and buckets, clay pipes, and old scaffolding boards can all be useful. Recycled materials give you a bit of creativity, bringing the charm of character and time to the environment. They also allow you to enhance the personality of your home and its design style. Old handmade bricks from reclamation yards go well with, for example, a Victorian terraced house.
Try An Eco Mower
They don’t use gas or make much noise. It has been reported that eight hundred million gallons of gas are used annually to power lawn mowers, says Audubon, which produces a large amount of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. Therefore, your choice of a lawn mower may have a considerable effect on the environment.
The EPA estimates that one gas mower emits 11 times more pollutants than a new car. A spooling or pushing lawn mower is best for smaller spaces. Blades work like scissors, cutting as you turn. Sharpen them to ensure a clean cut.
If you have a more extensive lawn, electrical is the way to go. Most battery-powered mowers mow in the same way as gas mowers, without polluting the air. Because a battery only lasts so long, think about buying a second battery to replace it if your lawn happens to be larger than half an acre.
Cut With Care
Set the lawn mower to three or three and a half inches high. The blades of grass will have a larger surface area on which the sun will shine, which means more photosynthesis and a happier, healthier lawn.
Try to mow only about one-third of the height of the grass each time you mow so that you do not cause stress to the plant or lawn.
Choose Eco Materials
Green materials, obtained and produced by local people, are most characteristic of ecologically sustainable gardens. Choosing them helps to reduce the carbon footprint, as they have a small number of air miles, plus most are barely using cement, which accounts for more than five percent of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions.
These materials also give gardens a ‘sense of place’ by linking them to the local environment, which is particularly important in rural areas.
Things such as cob (clay and straw), oak, rams, log walls, woven willow, chestnut logs, and even bales of straw are filled with character. You should pay more attention to the cost than usual. However, suppliers and artisans can also give you advice.
What works best visually depends on your location and what you can get easily. Therefore, find out what is available in your area.
Keep in mind that even though raw materials are cheaper, there will be no labor costs. Traditional materials need specialized skills that are passed down from generation to generation.
Saving water is very important, so place a restriction on each water pipe – you can choose weathered oak barrels or ubiquitous green plastic pipes. If you have space, think of an underground rainwater collection tank.
Large tanks can easily collect enough water for the middle garden, plus you can set them up to flush out your toilet. A clever sprayer that reduces costs also helps.
Don’t use a sprinkler in your garden. Water the roots of your plants without wasting them on leaves (automatic watering systems are useful here), repair leaking pond liners, buy large plant pots as they don’t dry out so quickly, and don’t mow the lawn too low in hot weather.
Invest In A Green Roof
An Eco-roof is becoming increasingly popular as they help to increase biodiversity, provide good thermal insulation, improve air quality, and control water flow. They are also beautiful.
Many products use different building technologies. You can even retrofit an existing barn or garage if they can withstand the weight.
Choose Eco-friendly Plants
Selecting the best plants is an important design tool, and even more so in an ecologically clean garden, because they provide food and shelter, creating an ideal habitat for healthy wildlife.
Choose many local berry plants and trees such as hawthorn, which can grow nearby – birds and insects are already used to them, so they will visit your garden more often if you grow them.
A hedge is better than walls as they are ideal nesting places and provide protection against predators. You should at least grow many climbers. Ivy is quite useful. It provides both protection and a rich source of nectar in autumn or winter when there is little food around.
Even nectar-rich flowers with an open face, such as Echinacea and Buddhist flowers, will make a big difference. They are preferable to modern double flowers which do not have suitable nectars to feed garden insects.
The key principle of planting is always to place them where they are happiest. Contained plants take care of themselves, and plants that are under stress need constant feeding and watering.
Therefore, make sure you do not plant sun lovers, for example, in the shade or vice versa. Putting the right plant in the right place will also help you to minimize the time you need to care for your garden.
In recent years, botanists, ecologists, and modern designers have taken this concept to a new level. It has resulted in naturalistic, eco-friendly meadows or prairie-like plants with multi-colored perennial plants and ornamental grass seas. Planting at this scale will often require space, but can still be achieved in a small garden.
Make sure you avoid excessive competition among perennials and that the color palette of the plants is simple so as not to look ‘a little.’
Increase Wildlife And Biodiversity
Encouraging wildlife makes your garden much more exciting and also helps with pest control – slug-eating hedgehogs and slow worms love heaps of logs and leaves.
To attract birds that help with caterpillar control, build nest boxes, and distribute a variety of food. Songbirds love dried fruits, blackbirds love rotten apples, and sunflower seeds will attract finches and blue tits.
Invigorate bees by choosing plants with “open faces” and bright, spectacular flowers that bloom all year round. Spring flowers are essential for awakening bees but are often overlooked. Wallflowers, urethra, and rosemary are all excellent sources of pollen and nectar.
In summer, catnip, thyme, and lavender are particularly useful. In autumn, ivy flowers are exquisite. To help single bees in an exclusive bee hotel, it is an ideal place for nesting.
Improve Your Soil
A lot of compost and well-decomposed manure will keep your soil in what gardeners call a “good heart.” It creates healthy soil that is rich in irreplaceable microorganisms, which in turn gives you healthy plants that resist diseases and pests.
Compost also absorbs water like a sponge, which is useful in loosely drained sandy soils. When planting, dig out a large bucket every few feet, and throw it on plants as mulch every spring. It will also help prevent light soils from being washed out in torrential rains.
Recycling green waste is also essential. Homemade compost is valuable and will save money on compost bags and a soil conditioner from garden centers.
What to add to the compost:
- Lawn trimmings
- Wood ash (in slow motion)
- Hedge trimming
- Vegetable peelings
- Shredded paper and paperboard
- Vacuum cleaner content
Avoid cooked food, meat, pet feces, and glossy magazines.
Create A Natural Garden
“A plant according to a garden, not a gardener,” is a spirit in the heart of a natural oasis, and a look at nature will give inspiration and a pattern to follow. You should work with the characteristics of your garden, not against them.
For example, huge forest plants are those that grow on forest fields in the wet shade. For sunny slopes, consider Mediterranean plants such as rosemary, juniper, laurel, and sage – plants with silver or blue-silver leaves that have naturally adapted to these conditions.
Swampy soil? Choose marshy ground. Your planting will not only be more visually pleasing but will also contribute to a happy, healthy planting and a reduction in pests and diseases.
Now more than ever, native plants are durable, easy to grow and provide food and valuable habitat for wild animals. It is ideal for a more relaxed design. They will also help preserve our endangered plant heritage.
Some favorite plants include barbed kettles, cannon-colored cotton thistle, and strong lifting anvils. Rapidly staining poor soils and sunny walls, red, pink, or white valerian flowers, in particular, stun and serve forever.
You could also leave some sections of the garden untidy. Nature loves dirt, so collect piles of leaves in undisturbed corners and collect logs and branches instead of burning them (if they are not infected).
You will encourage thousands of insects and feed birds. Hedgehogs also find these places insurmountable for hibernation.
To Sum Up
A healthy and lively yard or garden is a plus for any homeowner, and the best way to have one is to make it a natural, environmentally friendly one.
The EPA calls this “greening,” a practice that improves the health and appearance of your landscape while conserving natural resources. It also saves time and money.
Everything in your yard is connected – from treetops to the soil, and all the beautiful plants between them. Treat it as an ecosystem, not as its components, and it will thrive.