Would you like to be more eco-friendly in your garden? With lots of us becoming more mindful of the impact we have on the environment, it’s no wonder it’s a growing trend right now. In addition to this change in consumer behaviour, businesses are also moving towards greener production methods and more eco-friendly products that are recyclable, compostable, or reusable.
When it comes to your garden, there are lots of great eco-friendly gardening tips to help you make a start. Some of the most important of these are reducing waste, and growing your own produce. Here are four great sustainable gardening tips to help you become more eco-friendly in your garden this year.
Upcycle old materials that you might usually throw out
Upcycling materials rather than buying new ones is an excellent way to go green. Upcycling has grown in popularity, with homeowners having a go at more creative upcycling projects than ever before. Data has also shown that a staggering one-third of UK adults admit they throw away old furniture that could be recycled or reused. Just imagine the amount that ends up in landfill! Many old or spare materials and furniture can be put to good use in the garden.
Storage boxes, ladders, spare wood, and even old food containers can be reused and upcycled. Use them to hang plants, create planters, store gardening tools, or as garden decorations. Items can also be used to create homes for wildlife around your garden, such as habitats for hedgehogs and birds. You could build a birdhouse, create a hedgehog home, or repurpose an old teacup into a bird feeder. Pinterest is a great source of inspiration here.
Plant your own vegetable patch
For many people, being environmentally-friendly in the garden means refusing to buy produce that hasn’t been sustainably sourced, or growing your own instead. To make a success of grow your own, it’s important to know what’s in season and when to plant seeds, in order to give your crops the best chance. If you’re a bit daunted by the idea of growing your own, choosing easy to grow vegetables is a great place to start. Some of the easiest veggies for beginners to grow include potatoes, courgettes, runner beans and salad.
Even a small section in your garden is enough to create your very own vegetable patch. Just remember to protect your vegetable garden from pests and wildlife, who will find your crops just as tasty as you do! If you live in a cooler climate, you could consider investing in a greenhouse to grow your own produce. This will increase the range of fruit and veg you can grow considerably, adding heat-loving crops such as chillis, peppers, cucumbers, and even citrus fruit to your list. A greenhouse will also allow you to grow your own for a longer period of time every year, thanks to the temperature increase it provides.
Save on water usage in your garden
One of the biggest areas of waste in gardening is water. Watering plants, using a sprinkler for the lawn, or filling the paddling pool can add up to a huge amount surprisingly quickly. Luckily, there are some easy ways to save and reuse water in your garden. Some great sustainable gardening ideas include collecting rainwater, watering at cooler times of day to minimise evaporation, and watering your plants thoroughly but less frequently.
In the long run, reusing rainwater can help to save on water costs too, so it offers more benefits than just being an eco-friendly approach to use in your garden. At Northerntankstore.co.uk, they have a variety of water tanks and rainwater harvesting systems that can help people use water more efficiently. Rainwater collection systems can help people collect, store, and distribute water in their home and garden to reduce mains water usage. With easy installation and adjustable turrets, rainwater systems can help to reduce metered water costs by up to 50%.
Create your own compost heap
Another useful way to practice sustainable gardening is composting. Rather than buying fertiliser, you can recycle your food and waste to create your own organic version for free. A range of garden waste can be added to a compost bin when sprucing up your garden, including dead leaves, grass clippings, and flower heads. Using kitchen and garden waste for composting is one of the most environmentally-friendly ways of dealing with household waste.
Making your own compost will also save you money, as it reduces the amount of fertiliser you need to buy. Unlike some other garden activities, composting does not have a set time each year; it can be done all year round whenever waste needs disposing of. The RHS has some useful composting tips here to help gardeners get their compost mix just right.
More sustainable gardening tips
Hopefully these tips will help you make the first steps towards being more eco-friendly in your garden this year. For more sustainable gardening ideas, you might like to take a look at my eco-friendly gardening Pinterest board:
What’s your top tip for being eco-friendly in the garden?