Eco-Friendly Landscaping

Eco-Friendly Landscaping

What You Need to Know About Adding Eco-Friendly Landscaping

Along with adding curb appeal and impressing your friends when they come over for a barbecue, studies show that landscaping can improve aesthetic appreciation, health, and well-being. But somewhere in the midst of your health boost should be a strategy for making your yard more eco-friendly. Between increased energy and water costs, the desire for less maintenance, and the threat of global warming, it’s no wonder so many homeowners are jumping on the sustainable bandwagon. So, grab your best pair of garden gloves and get ready to change the way you think about landscaping with these tips courtesy of Eco Info.

Make Some Big Changes

If you want to go all-in on the eco-friendly front, you can install things like solar panels, which can help power things like your sprinkler system (among others). Additionally, there are many water-efficient sprinkler systems on the market, which makes your solar-powered sprinkler even more eco-friendly! However, the bigger the projects, the more money you’ll need. And while solar panels can help you save cash over the long term, you’ll need to handle the upfront costs of purchasing the panels and having them installed. Fortunately, there are assistance programs available that you can use that will help you refinance your current home to pay for these expenses or, if you want to make a really big change, buy a new one altogether.

Conserve Water

Along with being a sustainable practice, conserving water is a smart idea if you live in a drought-prone area, though it’s important to note that droughts can affect any region of the country for an unspecified amount of time. There are several ways to conserve water while landscaping, including:

  • Xeriscaping: Despite the complicated name, the process couldn’t be more simple. Simply replace grass with less water-dependent (yet aesthetically pleasing) vegetation, such as blue oat or purple needle grasses, succulents, sheep fescue, deergrass, lupines, or naturally growing flowers like California evening primrose or beach suncups.
  • Mulching: Materials such as bark and wood chips and pesticide-free grass clippings can be used to trap moisture, which can help reduce water use all season long.
  • Collect Rainwater: While it sounds old-fashioned, collecting rainwater from the rain gutter can be an effective way to cut down on costs and water usage.
  • Use Gray Water: Ask your plumber to set up a greywater system so you can reuse water leftover from the washing machine, baths, and showers. Just keep in mind that household soaps won’t harm plants, but harsh cleansers and chemicals will.
  • Be Mindful of Usage: Before watering plants, take a shovel and dig a blade’s length deep into the soil. If it’s damp, there’s no need to water. It’s still important to closely monitor your plants just in case as some soils can appear moist when they are actually dry. 

Use Natural Pesticides and Fertilizers

Chemical-based pesticides can be dangerous to humans and pets alike, so swap them out with a natural formula as they won’t seep into the ground, thus contaminating drinking water. Opt for either an in-store version made from the pyrethrum plant or go the DIY route with ground onions or garlic. Another good tip is to test your soil. You may discover that you don’t need to add any chemicals at all. If you do, opt for compost or other such organic materials.

Reduce or Cease Fuel Emissions

Emissions from mowers, blowers, chainsaws, and other outdoor equipment can cause pollution. Consider using manual push mowers and hand tools (which is great exercise!) in lieu of gas guzzlers that negatively affect the environment. If you need a good reason to mow your lawn less often, research suggests that the higher the lawn, the fewer the weeds. Of course, that doesn’t mean you should keep an unkempt yard. Keeping the blades at least three inches long is a good rule of thumb.

Once you make the necessary sustainable changes to your yard, you’ll see that it’s easier than ever to maintain your landscaped areas. Tasks will become less labor-intensive, fruits and vegetables (if applicable) will taste better, and you’ll have a little extra money in the bank. Not only will you be doing something good for your family, but you’ll be helping the planet, too. 

If you want to know about Global Warming check out this post.

Photo Credit: Pixabay

Author: Lisa Walker

Many thanks to Lisa Walker for this article.

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