Five Eco-Gardening Tips

'Sustainability' and 'eco-friendly' are two words you hear a lot these days. But what do they really mean to the everyday gardener? Eco-gardening is about conserving a chemical- and toxin-free garden by growing and cultivating your plants organically and in the most natural way possible. With a few easy tips, you can create a greener, more sustainable, eco-friendly garden.
 

Plant Indigenous Species

Part of creating an eco-friendly garden includes planting a locally adapted plant species that is accustomed to your region's climate and soil conditions. Such a plant will require less artificial upkeep such as pesticides, water, chemical fertilizers and other enhancements.

Mulching

The utilization of mulches (plastic or organic) around the plant can help reduce the loss of moisture, as well as limit the spread of fungal spores onto vulnerable plant tissues, reducing the chances of infection. Mulches also provide a rich source of carbon that is essential for soil microorganisms and can help reduce plant disease.

Composting

Composting is one of the most eco-friendly gardening methods that you can implement. Fallen leaves, kitchen waste and anything else thatʼs biodegradable can form very good compost manure that is beneficial for many reasons ' such as improvement of soil texture, injection of nutrients, decreasing soil erosion and reduction of the use of chemical fertilizers that can cause detrimental effects to the environment.

Weeding

While you can find organic herbicides at your local garden stores, a more practical and effective weed control mechanism is by weeding the old-fashioned way. That is, pulling the weeds out by hand before they establish their rooting system.

Conserve Rainwater

The most inexpensive way to conserve rainwater is by investing in a rain barrel. Rainwater is chlorine-free and nutritious for yards and gardens. In addition, water your garden less frequently but deeply. While this might appear counterintuitive, watering your plants less often makes them stronger. Consider watering early in the morning or late in the evening. Avoid middayʼs as the soil is more likely to lose moisture through evaporation.