Having your own personal green space is not only beautiful but can also be therapeutic as studies have shown gardening can improve mood and even helps accelerates healing.
And cultivating a green thumb to receive those benefits while also minimizing the human impact on the earth is what sustainable gardening is all about.
Here are a few tips to make sustainable gardening easier so that you can feel better about yourself while also contributing to a healthier environment.
Plant Native Species
Natives are plants that are indigenous to the area and climate in which you live. Because of this, natives require less water and work in order to thrive. They all have built-in defenses against local pests and do not require pesticides or fertilizers in order to survive.
Composting is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint by reusing your waste to make sustainable fertilizer. Composting may seem overwhelming but can be easy if you know what items to collect. Fruit and vegetable peels, coffee grounds, egg shells, dried leaves, grass and even shredded newspaper can be combined into a pile, watered and stirred weekly until it becomes dry and crumbly. Then add it to your flower beds and pots and watch your garden bloom.
Spreading 2-4 inches of mulch over your garden can help keep it moist, stops weeds from sprouting up and improves the soil’s fertility. Organic mulch can be made from items such as composting (see above), bark, shredded leaves, newspaper, grass and straw.
Conserving water is a no-brainer and can be easier by using a barrel to collect rain water. The water can then be used to water your garden, or a hose can be attached to the barrel to water your plants.
Speaking of hoses, its best to get one made of nontoxic materials such as natural rubber or polyurethane. A recent study by The Ecology Center found that vinyl hoses left in the sun contained water with traces of harmful lead, phthalates, and bisphenol A. The good news is that toxic PVC hoses can then be recycled into handy storage basket.