We’ve been gardening for years. Once we moved to the Philadelphia 8 years ago from South Florida we knew that a garden was in our future. We are fortunate to have a large backyard so it made it easy for us to have a nice size garden. When planning our garden we knew from the beginning that we wanted it organic and sustainable as possible. Growing a organic chemical-free vegetables are of course more sustainable for our health, wildlife, soil and the water supply. You can think beyond the actual growing of the seeds. From the water and energy conservation to waste reduction and smart seed sourcing are important ways to make our practices more sustainable. Here are some of my favorite ways to make a garden more sustainable. Some I’ve been doing for years and others are on my wish list.
Sustainable Gardening Tips
Organic Seeds – When you buy organic seed, you have the assurance that the seed was grown without synthetic chemicals and you are supporting farms and companies that are committed to organic agriculture with your purchases. Recently I’ve used High Mowing organic seeds for my 2015 garden. High Mowing Organic Seeds is committed to providing the highest quality 100% organic see to growers
Composting – This is a simple way to add nutrients to your soil which fuels plant growth and restores vitality to depleted soil. There are many ways you can set up compost at home or if you don’t have a large area to compost at home you could find a service like we’ve done with Kitchen Harvest.
Cold Framing – This is a great way to extend your gardening season. When you build a cold frame you can easily trick those plants into thinking that it’s warmer than it actually is so they continue to produce food well into the winter months.
Rain Barrel – They usually range from 50-80 gallons and have a spigot for filling watering cans or connect to a hose. When having a rain barrel it promotes water conservation and bonus…saves you a ton on your water bill during those summer months.
Add Livestock – This might not be as easy to incorporate into our garden but it’s worth a try. One thing I’ve wanted for years is chickens. We have a great yard for it and they would help our garden too. Chickens are great for tick prevention and chicken poop makes great manure and we all know how important manure is to a healthy garden!
Reusable Materials – When starting your seeds use containers you already have in your house such as old yogurt cups or egg cartons. There is no need to purchase something new when you can upcycle the old.
Use Sustainable Tools – A garden that is kinder to the earth can be achieved through the selection of products and tools that are sustainably manufactured or given new life through recycling. Some of my favorite tools come from a website called Minnie and Moon.
While I’ve been gardening organically for while now I am still learning and always looking for new ways to make my garden even more sustainable. How are you making your garden sustainable this season? I’d love to hear your ideas.
I received seeds from High Mowing Organic Seeds as part of my yo-Getter relationship with Stonyfield.