Editors Note: Updated October, 2018
Help Save the Environment!
Take a couple of minutes to learn how you can do your part to build a healthier planet! Gardening is good for the environment for several extraordinary reasons!
1. Collective Effort
Planting your own garden may make you wonder how much of a difference you are actually making. The thing is, gardening is a collective effort! Many small gardens in a community can make a huge difference. In fact, research in the UK found that personal gardens compose over 25% of the trees in non-forest environments! This is your chance to do your part!
Gardening on a small scale will also influence the greater scheme of things for several different reasons. Think about this, commercial production of fruits and vegetables produce unforeseen amounts of pollution as a byproduct of harmful chemicals and pesticides that are used during the harvest process. Also, fewer trucks on the road transporting groceries means less air pollution and fewer big rigs on the roads! All of this requires a commitment on an individual level!
2. Organic Gardening
It is important to understand that the Earth’s natural ecosystem has been designed to sustain itself without the interaction of humans! Have you ever looked in awe at a natural landscape full of birds, bees, trees, flowers, and beautiful plant life? Guess what; it didn’t take fertilizer, pesticides, and slug repellent to enrich this environment!
Creating a compost pile is a great way to enrich the soil and reduce the size of those menacing landfills! Compost is filled with recycled garden waste and puts valuable nutrients back into the soil without the need for man-made chemicals. Landfills have detrimental impacts on the soil that it is directly located on but also create a nuisance to surrounding areas. Just think of that smell! Yuck! So remember, less fertilizer and more organic ingredients make the world a better place!
If you’re sitting there wondering how to even start a compost pile, we’ve got you covered. The easiest thing to do is to start with a compost bin and see how that goes for you. Here are a quick few steps to get you started:
- Choose the correct bin. Your local gardening store should have some available for a reasonable price. If you want to go a different route, you can always make your own or even re purpose an old trash can.
- Put the bin somewhere that’s close to your home. You want easy access if you plan on using it during inclement weather. Running through the rain to get to your compost bin is not a fun job!
- Next, layer brown and green materials in 2″-4″ thick layers. Brown material is dead leaves, twigs, etc. while green material is fruits, vegetables, coffee grounds, etc. If you’d like a full list of things you can compost, check out this helpful article!
- If needed, add moisture to your bin. To properly decompose, your bin needs to be a little wet. Not soaking, but similar to a wrung out sponge.
- Finally, it’s best to turn your bin at least once a week. This allows it to decompose faster.
3. Global Warming
Global warming, the end all and topic of countless conspiracy theories! Here are the basics of global warming.
• C02 is a greenhouse gas that helps to trap heat from the sun on the Earth. Too much C02 can be a bad thing.
• Global warming is caused by too many greenhouse gases, making it difficult for the Earth to cool naturally.
In the natural process of photosynthesis, plants take in C02 and release valuable oxygen molecules. There is a good chance that we all learned this back in grade school! Should have been listening! By investing time in your own garden, you can effectively help the collective effort to reduce the amount of C02 in the Earth’s atmosphere! A concerted effort in areas known to contain high levels of air pollution and smog can definitely benefit from this!
4. Wildlife Preservation
With a constantly growing global population, it can be easy to forget about the natural environments that we impact when we alter the planet. The Earth is composed of small inter-dependent ecosystems. Growing a garden can create habitats for smaller life forms like birds, insects, aphids, ants and other species that thrive and reproduce in the ecosystem. Each creature plays an important role in helping the environment!
As mentioned previously, slug repellent can kill slugs and effectively keep them from eating your leaves! But wait! Slugs and other bugs are necessary for the ecosystem and serve their own particular role! If we remove these smaller creatures from the ecosystem, it could create negative implications for animals higher up in the food chain! That is why it is important to preserve wildlife, keep the Earth healthy, and practice organic gardening!
Here are a couple of other actions you can take to help make the Earth healthier!
• Use non-toxic fertilizers and pesticides with no harmful chemicals. Organic manure will provide your plants with all the necessary nutrients to grow without the dangerous chemicals used in traditional synthetic products!
• Use a cordless electric lawnmower instead of a gasoline powered mower. Similar to hybrid vehicles, going electric reduces emissions pollution!
• Keep your garden wholesome and get rid of slugs by placing egg shells around the perimeter. Slugs cannot walk over these, creating an all-natural and organic solution to your problem. Best of all, egg shells are beneficial for the soil and add calcium!
To learn more about the benefits of gardening, check out this post to see How Gardening Can Save Your Life.
About This Post
Cheryl Khan is a freelance writer and avid interior designer. Her favorite fruit is cantaloupe on a warm sunny day!