5 Ways to Garden with the Climate in Mind
June 1, 2015.
Memorial Day has come and gone, and traditional fashion protocol tells us that it is once again the season of white pants. Gardening season is upon us as well, which means that you may want to hold off on those easily dirtied jeans in favor of an old t-shirt and some gardening gloves!
At first glance, gardens are quite eco-friendly – produce can be consumed without the use of fossil-fuel based transportation and preservation, and often minimal pesticides are used in comparison to large-scale producers.
However, below we outline a few of the ways in which certain gardening habits can negatively impact the environment, along with five ways to alleviate these effects and ensure the sustainability of your garden. A few of our favorite ClimateStore products are featured below as well to further assist your journey to climate-conscious gardening.
1. Compost Almost Everything
Climate Issue: Burning your gardenwaste releases greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, and throwing such waste away adds unnecessarily to our landfills.
How you can help: Recycle kitchen food waste and yard clippings by turning them into compost that can be used to provide critical nutrients for your garden.
Our Compost Wizard Dueling Tumbler’s 50 gallon capacity and easy-grip handle makes it perfect for families to start composting with.
2. Use Companion Plantings
Climate Issue: Pesticides and herbicides discharge harmful chemicals into the environment, release heat-trapping gases, and require lots of energy to manufacture.
How you can help: Take advantage of companion planting, the practice of growing plants close to one another in order to provide mutually advantageous outcomes. One such benefit of companion planting is improved pest control, a result which allows you to reduce your use of harmful pesticides. Some examples include the intercropping of tomatoes and cabbages to deter ragweed, and the planting of odorous marigolds near roses to repel aphids.
3. Install a Rain Barrel to Conserve Water
Climate Issue: Gardening typically involves the consumption of high quantities of water, for water is vital to the growth of plants and vegetables.
How you can help: Select drought resistant plant varieties and collect rainwater to limit your water expenditure.
Our Impressions Palm 50 Galleon Rain Saveris a great way to start collecting rainwater for your garden.
4. Use Eco-Friendly Garden Furniture
Climate Issue: A large portion of garden furniture is made from fossil-fuel based plastics or from metal coated in hazardous chemicals.
How you can help: Buy furniture that is produced in a climate conscious manner. One way to ensure that a product is sustainably-sourced is to look for certain certifications – for example, certification from the Forest Stewardship Council indicates that a wood product was produced by a company practicing environmentally responsible forestry.
5. Plant Cover Crops in the Offseason
Climate Issue: Carbon loss occurswhen your garden’s soil is bare and plant-less during the off-season.
How you can help: Plant cover crops (such as wheats, grasses, and legumes), for these crops store carbon and work to limit your home’s greenhouse gas outputs. They further benefit your garden by suppressing weeds, reducing erosion, and providing nutrients.
Following these tips will not only provide immediate benefits to the environment, but will help protect the gardens of future generations. Indeed, agriculture is predicted to suffer as a result of climate change, which is likely to increase the intensity and frequency of extreme weather and provide benefits to certain varieties of weeds. To help lessen these negative outcomes and maximize the sustainability of your household, eco-friendly gardening is an important and positive path to follow.