By Natalie Wilson:
It is now more important than ever to teach your children about sustainable living. Living sustainably, or at least as sustainably as you and your family can manage, is a great way to reduce the use of our planet’s natural resources. And when it comes to your garden, this is especially important.
Anyone who has an outdoor garden or space is sure to know about the positive benefits of spending time outdoors. If you and your children love spending time in the garden, then these sustainable garden tips and tricks are easy to implement and extremely effective when it comes to protecting your surrounding ecosystem.
Plant Local Species
Locally adapted or indigenous plant and flower species are biologically designed and suited to your country or region’s climate and natural soil conditions. These plants are likely also to have inbuilt natural defenses to protect them against local pests as well. These plant and flower species are much more likely to survive without the need for fertilizers, chemicals or pesticides, and will grow far more efficiently. Take a trip to your local garden center to find suggestions for what to plant.
The fresh soil created from composting fallen leaves, garden waste, food leftovers and more can dramatically reduce the need for chemical fertilizers. The compost will improve soil texture, decrease soil erosion, and add nutrients to your plants and flowers. Composting can also help to improve your carbon footprint, as you will be sending less food waste into landfills.
Catching and using rainwater is a great way to conserve water and save money. A rain barrel or water butt will collect the water, and you can then attach a hose or use it to fill your watering can in order to care for and tend to your garden. You should set up a way to save rainwater sooner rather than later, as it may take some time to accumulate enough water to fulfill your gardening needs, but you will be surprised as to just how much it collects when it rains!
If you spend a lot of time in your garden, then you likely have a lot of furniture and garden accessories that you love. If your children spend a lot of time outdoors, then they also probably have a large collection of items they love using in the garden. However, where you can, try to include and use sustainable garden furniture or toys. A lot of garden furniture and accessories are made from plastic or non-recyclable materials, and children’s garden toys are likely to be plastic also, so look for items made from wood or recycled materials instead.
Natalie Wilson is a freelance writer with a particular focus on sustainability and eco-friendly living. Whether you’re looking for a new meditation method or some facts on plastic pollution, she’s your girl! When not writing, Natalie can be found heading to the gym or walking her dog. You can connect with her on Twitter @NatWilson976.