But wait! Aren’t all gardens naturally eco-friendly?
Nope — sorry to burst your bubble. But never fear! Here are 6 ways you can make your garden eco-friendly so it’s 100% Earth Day approved.
1. Use organic mulch
Did you know that some mulch is made from recycled tire? This may seem like a great option for its longevity and lower maintenance, but it is certainly not eco-friendly. There are a number of reasons why you shouldn’t have rubber pieces piled around your plants and yard so we’ll just leave it at that.
We recommend an all-natural, organic mulch because as it breaks down, it releases nutrients into the soil that will feed your plants over time. Natural bark mulch is also safer for kids and pets if chewed on or swallowed.
Mulch is often dyed different colors, so make sure the packaging mentions that they’re from natural sources as well.
2. Line garden beds with natural materials
Rocks and stones make beautiful, natural looking outlines to your garden beds. Not only do they look great, but they don’t contain plastics or other unnatural materials found in the most common products for this purpose.
3. Choose pollinator-friendly plants
By choosing Bloomin’ Easy plants, you’re automatically helping support pollinators. If we had to recommend one, however, it would probably be Peach Lemoande® Rose because it blooms continuously from spring until frost, giving many pollinators what they need to survive and thrive.
Bees especially need our help to grow their populations that have been in decline since the 90’s. Without bees, we wouldn’t have most of the food we enjoy today so it’s critical that we plant pollinator friendly shrubs, trees, perennials, and annuals. Bee houses are more commonly sold today, too, which is a great way to provide them with shelter. If you’re interested in learning more, here are 7 Things You Can Do for Pollinators this season.
4. Use organic fertilizers
Chemical fertilizer may cost less to provide food to your garden, but it’s not an eco-friendly solution. The more you use synthetic chemicals, the more you kill off the natural nitrogen fixing bacteria our ecosystems need. Not only that, but chemical fertilizers may affect your plants health. For example, continued use can lower vitamin C in citrus fruit trees and could potentially grow fungus and disease because of the lack of trace elements in the soil.
We recommend using natural fertilizers found at your local garden center, or even composted from your own compost bin at home. These require specific consideration, but if you’re willing to put in the work, it can drastically reduce food waste and provide an economical way to feed your garden.
5. Harvest rainwater
Harvesting rainwater makes the most eco-friendly sense because it allows us to save what mother nature gives us to use later when dry seasons hit. This can save money as well as precious resources from community reservoirs.
Check out this article on how to harvest rainwater.
Make sure to investigate whether harvesting rainwater is allowed where you live. Some HOA and Strata bylaws or city ordinances don’t permit the harvesting and storing of rainwater. If this is the case, perhaps you’ll feel led to fight for your eco-friendly rights ;)
6. Use natural pest management
Chemical sprays and pesticides are (sadly) often more available and affordable than the natural alternatives. Many people don’t know exactly how many natural remedies are available or what to do for each problem. We recommend talking with your local garden center experts because they can help diagnose and treat each issue and they know your area best.
Did you know that Ladybugs are good for our gardens and even eat aphids? A chemical spray would kill them and pretty much all other bugs in your garden that are critical to the eco-system. If you find yourself having a common aphid problem, buying some ladybugs at the garden center can be one simple solution that you can feel good about and that’s totally eco-friendly.