Folks that are serious about gardening, landscaping and general outdoor beautification are usually pretty environmentally conscious to begin with. If you love the natural beauty of a garden you probably want to keep it that way, right?
However, many outdoor and nature lovers inadvertently harm the ecosystem they care so much about by making mistakes when caring for their gardens and landscaping. What follows are two easy ways you can ensure you’re not only maintaining a beautiful outdoor sanctuary, but you’re taking care of the environment too.
- Use Native Plants
What exactly does it mean when we say “native plants?” Native plants are those that are indigenous to a particular region. In other words, they’re found naturally, and haven’t been transplanted from another geographical location. Native plants have co-evolved with the insects and animals that live in the same area.
Take heed, as most nurseries stock a large amount of non-native plants, complete with non-native insects and potential diseases. These non-native plants can take over an ecosystem, threatening the native plants in the area and degrading the habitat for insects and animals.
Using native plants makes sense for the homeowner as well, and comes with many benefits. Native plants generally require less maintenance, which saves time and money. They reduce the need for harmful fertilizers and insecticides, creating a healthier environment for people and animals. Native plants usually require far less water as well, which also saves time, money and a very important natural resource.
- Recycle Yard Waste
If you’re not careful, maintaining that gorgeous garden of yours can produce a surprisingly large amount of waste. Here are a few tips to reduce and reuse some of that waste.
- Minimize plant waste by mowing, pruning and cutting grass, shrubs and trees only when it’s needed.
- Buy soil and mulch in bulk when possible, which will eliminate all of those plastic bags. If you can’t, consider reusing those bags for other purposes.
- Use pruned branches as substitutes for store-bought plant stakes.
- Think outside the box! There are plenty of ways to creatively conserve while maintaining your lawn.
Having a beautiful garden and lawn is fantastic, and shows a love for nature and the plants and animals that come along with it. Being ecologically conscious in the maintenance of your garden and landscape ensures that those plants and animals will stick around, and that you’ll have many years of enjoyment from your property.