It’s that time of year again – the sun is shining, the snow is melting, and Manitobans are starting to think about their lawns and gardens. Heading outside and getting your hands dirty is a great way to kick off the new season.
But before jumping right in to planting, it’s a good idea to consider the environment. A yard full of plants and trees may look great, but maintaining so much greenery requires lots of water and fertilizer. What’s a person with a green thumb to do?
The answer lies in green landscaping. Green landscaping means creating and caring for your yard in a way that reduces harmful impacts on the environment. It’s about making choices that minimize your use of water and chemicals, optimize your outdoor spaces, and reduce your water and energy bills.
Green landscaping is easier than you might think. Here are some pointers to get you started:
- Plant sun-loving trees or shrubs on the south side of your home. They’ll provide shade in the summer and act as a windbreak when the temperature drops.
- Adjust your lawn mower to a higher setting. A taller lawn shades roots and helps soil retain moisture.
- Keep your grass clippings on your lawn after mowing. These clippings provide natural fertilizer for your lawn by returning moisture and nutrients to the soil.
- Reduce your water consumption by using a rain barrel that collects rainwater from your downspout. This water can be used for your plants, flowers, and lawn.
- Start composting. Many food scraps can be composted to create nutrient-rich soil for your plants and flowers. It also helps to divert waste from our landfills and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.