What makes an energy-friendly garden?
Posted by Anna Carlini on 30 March 2017 at 3:01 pm
Don’t we all dream of having a green garden? I know I do. The thought of lush green grass, vibrant leaves and sheltering trees makes me want to retreat into that sweet haven for the whole of spring. But saving water and energy in your garden is something we should all take more care to do. In an effort to have an attractive garden we sometimes end up throwing money (and water) down the drain...
Luckily there are many ways to make your garden hold on to its water and power itself from renewable energy, while enhancing the feel of a pleasant and pretty place to relax.
Being water smart
Mulching: Mulching is placing bark or wood chippings on the surface of the soil to help it retain moisture. It acts as insulation for the soil and helps it to retain moisture. This means that you don’t need to water your plants as often come summer. Remember to be choosey with your mulch! The environmental cost of some mulches (such as rubber or cypress chippings) can be high. So make sure you do your research before investing.
Eco-friendly fountains: The ideal fountain is self-sufficient and re-circulates water. This will cut cost, water and environmental impact. Solar water fountains are a good option. As long you place them in direct sunlight they can power themselves during the day with no electricity taken from the mains at all.
Water butt: Installing a water butt means you can catch and store rainwater to reuse on your garden when needed. Apart from the initial cost of the tank, this is a very cheap option to prevent paying for water from your hose pipe. What's more, the water should be mineral and chlorine free!
Rain water harvesting: This works in a similar vein to the butt, but on a larger scale. As well as being useful for watering your plants in a dry spell, a rain water harvesting system would benefit the inside of your house as well! Rainwater can be used to flush your toilet and heat your home. Rainwater tanks are large installations, but they are another great way of capitalising on free resources.
Lighting: Solar powered lights are a great way to bring light and colour to your evening. These have come a long way since they were first available on the market, and you can now get lights of all varieties including lanterns, hanging fairy lights and standing tea lights. These look pretty and will draw no electricity from the mains.
Motion Sensors: These can be a clever addition to your outdoor lighting. They turn off when no one is around to need them, and come on when they detect movement. They are a simple but easy way to use less electricity. You could even set a timer to dictate when they turn on and off. Either way, no more hassle in remembering to turn the outside light off!
Green gardens extras
Save money on purchasing fertiliser and use natural materials around your home instead. Try some used tea bags or grass clippings. Also, make your own compost. You will save money on fertiliser and recycle your kitchen waste too!
Furnish your patio with a set of recycled table and chairs. Get some second hand from a charity shop or buy ones made from recycled materials.
And lastly, an easy way to make your garden look good without any cost is to appeal to the wildlife! Encourage more wildlife into your garden by hanging bird feeders and planting flowers which will encourage bees and butterflies. In a few weeks time this will add a whole layer of beauty to your garden, without you needing to spend a penny on any animal ornaments - you'll have the real deal.
By having a water and energy efficient back yard, you will achieve the dream "Green Garden"!
Image From: ukgardenphotos
More information about rain water harvesting on YouGen.
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