Keep it Green: Gardening

May 25, 2010, 11:39 am

April showers bring May flowers. This spring keep your garden eco-friendly and follow these simple tips.

  • Use Native Plants: Native plants not only add a little local color to your garden, but they are also environmentally friendly. Native plants generally don’t require the fertilizer, water, pesticides and other resources often needed to raise non-native plants.
  • Make Compost: Making compost from your everyday waste is a perfect way to fertilize your garden. Using compost minimizes your dependence fertilizers and pesticides that can harm the environment.
  • Get a Rain Barrel: Rain Barrels are great way the harness rain water to use for watering your garden. Be sure to keep the rainwater moving and aerated for the best results. Water plants in the early morning to avoid evaporation; also pour water directly on the roots.
  • Use Recycled Planters: Use old tires, tins, milk and soda bottles, soda or even plastics to grow your plants. Reusing these materials as planters will keep them out of landfills and enable you to put fresh food and flowers on your table.
  • Grow your own food: Not only is growing your own food the best way to get fresh produce, it’s also one of the most cost effective ways to do so. If you don’t already have a green thumb, do some research on growing season and the amount of sunlight and water your plants will need.
  • Get rid of harmful pesticides: Pesticides can sometimes do more harm than good. By design, pesticides are toxic. Pesticides are non-discriminate killers, meaning a pesticide will kill both the bad insects in your garden and take the ones that are necessary for the health of the garden as collateral damage. When protecting your garden, consider using eco-friendly products like boric acid or diatomaceous earth. If you must use pesticides consider using a pesticide that targets only the specific pest you are trying to keep away. Some gardeners find upside down planters protect plants from earthbound insects and many other garden pests, like moles and voles.