10 Tips for Making your Outdoor Space more Eco-Friendly!
Ever wonder how to be more sustainable in your yard and garden? In this post I’ll go over 10 tips to make your yard a more eco-friendly place.
Please note, there are many more than 10 things you can do in your yard to make it more sustainable, these are just a few. Have you found any innovative ways to live more sustainably? Drop it in the comments below!
1. Plant native plants. Provide nectar, pollen, and seeds that serve as food for native butterflies, insects, birds, and other animals. Native plants are beneficial to have around your house because they are adapted to the local climate and soil conditions. They usually do not require extra watering or maintenance.
2. Compost those scraps! Growing up, we always had a compost bin in the yard. You can buy one, build one, or get one for free through your local solid waste district. The compost keeps kitchen scraps out of landfills and enriches soil. Not only does it reduce dependency on chemical fertilizers, but compost also improves drainage, water retention, and soil texture. Veggie and fruit scraps, tea bags, coffee grounds, and yard waste are all fair game.
3. Rain Barrels are awesome. Not only do they look cool next to your house, they are very beneficial. Harvesting rainwater is one of the simplest ways to make your yard green. Harvested rainwater is used to water yards and gardens, thus reducing the amount of outdoor household water usage. It also captures stormwater runoff from roofs and gutters, which prevents pollution from entering the water supply.
4. Use alternative ways to power tools! Consider replacing your gas-powered lawn tools with battery or solar-powered models. If there is an option to use a different method of powering your tool, invest in it!
5. Hang a bird feeder in your yard. Not only is bird watching a fun pastime (where are my birders at?), birds also provide a natural way to control insects around your house.
6. Hang a bat house on the side of your house or on a tree. One little brown bat can eat up to 1000 mosquito-sized insects per night. Talk about natural insect control! Bats are one of my favorite animals. I’ll be posting more about them in the future - they are such amazing and misunderstood creatures.
7. Grow your own produce! Growing your own fruits and vegetables at home is not only economical, but it’s also so rewarding to pick something from your own garden and eat it! The produce we get in stores has been picked way before you get to buy it in the store. Eating produce when it’s first picked is nutritional, delicious, and so satisfying.
8. Pick up your dog poop! A common misconception or excuse people use is that poop is natural fertilizer (this is not true), Dog waste is actually so high in nitrogen and phosphorus that it can have the opposite effect of fertilizer. However, it’s worse than just nitrogen and phosphorus; dog waste is even more full of disease-causing bacteria and parasites than other types of waste. These bacteria and parasites are harmful to humans and spread disease to other dogs. If you don’t pick up after your dog, you are putting other people and other dogs at risk of getting sick. It can even burn your lawn if you don’t pick it up. Waste also causes all sorts of issues for local watersheds, but that’s a blog post for another day!
9. Instead of using concrete, consider pervious concrete pavement. Pervious pavement or porous concrete allows runoff to seep into the ground, reducing stormwater runoff. If you are looking to lay a slab of concrete around your house, consider using a pervious concrete instead of the traditional kind.
10. Use natural pest control! Pesticides have long been known to have detrimental effects on both the environment and public health. Using alternatives to the traditional chemically-laced products can help minimize your impact on the environment. We suggest using Benesafe™ Solutions to combat fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes around your house!