Landscaping that harmonizes your home’s exterior creates timeless and elegant curb appeal. A yard that is mindfully landscaped to be environmentally friendly is attractive to homebuyers if and when you sell your home. What types of plants and shrubs do you want and where should they go? An effective landscape plan identifies parts of your property that are currently green and areas that could be greener. Many people who embrace eco-friendly gardening find it is low-maintenance and cost-effective.
What is eco-friendly landscaping?
We might have a general idea of what eco-friendly landscaping, but what exactly does it mean? It is an earth-conscious way of maintaining your property. Eco-friendly landscape design takes into consideration ways to reduce water usage, soil erosion, and the use of toxic or harmful chemicals. It’s all about being kind to the environment by being as sustainable as possible. There are many ways to be eco-friendly while making your yard a beautiful, inviting outdoor living space.
Replace plants with native species.
Use plants, trees, and shrubs native to your locale. They will be easier to maintain since they typically don’t require pruning, fertilizing, or watering. The additional bonus of gardening with native species such as red columbine, Oregon grape, and vine maple is that they attract birds, butterflies, and bees to your yard.
Instead of grass, plant ground cover.
Traditional gardening and lawn care methods are expensive to maintain on an annual basis. The cost of maintaining lawn care equipment, fuel, water, fertilizer, and battling weeds quickly adds up. Significantly reduce the amount of time and money spent on maintaining your yard by replacing grass, with ground cover. Essentially a creeping plant that spreads over the ground to protect the soil, popular ground cover plants in the lower mainland include Japanese pachysandra, white Dutch clover, and golden stonecrop.
Reduce the size of your lawn.
If you still want to retain your nice green lawn, reducing its size by a minimum by 30 percent can make your yard more sustainable. Replace part of the lawn with a large vegetable garden, a small herb garden, a salad garden, or some combination of the three.
Install a water conservation system.
Rain harvesting is the process of collecting and storing rainwater instead of allowing it to become runoff. Installing a water conservation system of some kind lets you use rainwater for a number of non-potable purposes, further reducing the amount of water used to maintain your landscaping. The most common rain harvest method for residential applications is the rain barrel, usually installed as part of the gutter system, underneath the downspouts
Use water wisely.
Conserving water and using it wisely is a big part of making your yard environmentally friendly. Adhere to municipal water restrictions. Ensure the sprinkler system (manual or automated) is spraying vegetation and not the side of the garage. Avoid overwatering – know your plant species and their individual watering needs.
Add solar-powered outdoor lighting.
Outdoor landscape lighting adds ambience to a patio; highlights a certain flowerbed or area of the front yard; or outlines the driveway. Solar-powered lights are not just eco-friendly, they are easy to install since they don’t require wiring. Another alternative that is also earth-friendly is LED lighting.