People have been cultivating the natural environment for thousands of years. Through trial and error, they’ve learned the most effective ways to develop healthy soil, grow beautiful floral displays and produce abundant harvests. Many gardeners today are benefiting from eco-friendly practices on their property.
Eco-friendly landscaping works with the environment instead of against it. Although it takes more time and patience to see results, eco-friendly choices help the earth and your property to flourish. Here are seven benefits you can enjoy from choosing eco-friendly landscaping.
1. Less Labor
Eco-friendly properties don’t need as much upkeep as those with traditional landscaping. Many earth-conscious gardeners suggest switching out the ideal of a flat, smooth lawn for a “nectar lawn.” These lawns require less mowing and will attract more insects with clover and flowering ground cover.
Less time spent mowing means you’ll burn less fuel and have more time to enjoy your yard. You can also save time and energy by recycling or reusing all yard waste right on your property. To reduce time battling weeds, cover all exposed soil with plants or mulch.
2. More Biodiversity
One of the best things about eco-friendly landscapes is that they increase your yard’s biodiversity with minimal effort from you. For example, less mowing means more native weeds and wildflowers. These plants attract pollinators like bees, butterflies and birds.
Shelter is another benefit of an eco-friendly landscape. Some modern gardeners are building “fedges,” or hedge fences constructed out of tree cuttings and other yard waste. These materials break down and enrich the soil over time, but they also provide essential shelter for helpful garden critters like toads and birds.
3. Reduced Pollution
Traditional gardening wisdom calls for you to till the soil every year. However, turning and mixing soil leads to oxidation and a release of carbon dioxide. Breaking your ground once and then adding mulch each year actually leads to healthier soil.
Many modern gardeners are also moving away from pesticides, which kill helpful insects and poison surrounding bodies of water. There are many organic options for controlling pests and reducing weed growth instead. Although it might be frustrating at times, going pesticide-free is much better for your property.
4. Lowered Cost
Maintaining your property can get very expensive. However, you can significantly reduce these costs by planning your yard according to eco-friendly principles. For example, install drip irrigation to keep your soil moist and fertile without wasting water. You can also use rain barrels and water your garden in the early morning to reduce evaporation.
Trees and shrubs can act as windbreaks and help control the temperature in your home. If planted strategically, they can reduce your energy bills and allow you to invest more money into improving your property. Although the initial landscaping installation may take some special machinery, you shouldn’t have to spend much on labor or upkeep afterward.
5. Waste Management
Eco-friendly gardening is an amazing closed-loop system. All the plant material you remove can be composted and used to enrich the soil and next year’s growth. Instead of being wasted, it turns into garden gold. You can start an official compost in a corner of your garden, create hügelkultur beds or build a fedge along the side of your property.
If you’re running out of room and legislation allows, you can also burn excess plant matter. Have a bonfire party and invite friends over to enjoy the event. However, be very careful not to burn irritating plants like poison ivy as the smoke can make you sick. It’s also very important to burn material far away from buildings or trees.
6. Healthy Soil
Healthy soil is the foundation for a healthy landscape. Natural methods of gardening focus on composting and maintaining the structural integrity of your soil. You can also start a worm farm to enhance the health of your soil. Some gardeners mix organic matter into their soil as well to reduce water runoff and increase nutrient levels.
By avoiding chemicals and composting, you can develop rich, dark topsoil that grows healthy plants with minimal help from you. This is a process that will take some time, depending on the present condition of your soil. However, every investment you make into healthy soil will be well worth the effort.
7. Beautiful Blooms
Although eco-friendly landscaping can reduce energy costs and increase biodiversity, there’s another good reason to invest in it. Working with the environment will make your yard the most beautiful it’s ever been. These principles will create a haven for plants, animals and insects of every shape and color.
Eco-friendly landscapes often look a bit different from the traditional, perfectly-kept yard. The lawn may be longer, plants are grown closer together and edges aren’t always as defined. However, eco-friendly landscaping principles lead to bigger and more vibrant plants every year.
Invest in Your Yard’s Health
Eco-friendly design helps your yard become the healthiest it’s ever been. Eliminating pesticides invites pollinators in and leads to biodiversity in plant and animal life. Instead of throwing out your yard waste, you can recycle it into the ground to create healthier soil and shelter for wildlife.
Following eco-friendly principles means that you’ll work less, pay less and achieve more. With time and patience, your landscape will become the most beautiful it’s ever been. This process begins with a single step and can lead wherever you want. Use these seven benefits of eco-friendly landscaping as inspiration to get started.