Its Time to Consider Changing Our Gardening Ways!
It may be time to start changing our gardening ways. This year the weather has been a constant reminder of climate change and the problems we face in the future. The US National Snow and Ice Data Centre have shown this summer that the polar ice cap is melting at a greater rate than ever before.
The impact this will have on British weather is that our warm will be warmer, our cold colder and our wet much much wetter! Extreme types of weather including storms, cold spells, heat waves and floods that we have seen so much of this year will become more frequent. Many people believe that climate change will just mean a hotter more pleasant- weathered Britain but the patterns of change are too erratic for this to be true.
This is not meant to be alarming, just a practical thought about what we as gardeners can do differently to help. We’ve complied a list of easy to make changes that will help your garden and the environment -
- Refrain from using pestacides. Instead surround your plants with herbs, eggshells, coffee grounds or seaweed!
- Use recycled containers to grow seeds. Create seed pots out of used egg boxes, yoghurt pots or polystyrene cups.
- Swap Seeds! Look out for local seed swapping events, often held at allotments or gardening clubs. Or, you could simply swap any seeds you aren’t using with your neighbour.
- Collect rain water and lay off the hose! Be careful not to collect water from lead roofs or guttering because it may contain chemical compounds that could be harmful for your garden.
- Recycle! Create a rustic feel to your garden with a mixture of old pots, chimneys and other containers.
- Create Mulch to stop weeds and keep your soil moist. Create organic mulch out of leaves, bark chips, straw, manure and recycled woodchips.
- Plant native plants in your garden. Native plants are under threat, it’s important to do your part and grow local plants in your garden. They will be adjusted to the environment and need less care.
- Avoid chemicals, use nettles as plant feed! Nettles make a fantastic liquid plant food. Use young nettles, and leave 1kg in 10 litres of water for two weeks. It’s best to use a container with a lid.
You may have noticed that due to unseasonable weather plants are not growing at the rate that we are used to. As well as plants many vegetables are running to seed before you are able to harvest them all or are just not growing properly at all!
As well as making your own contribution to the environment, you may need to start adapting your gardening to the weather if you want it to continue to flourish. Start by sowing as much as possible in autumn and using more protection than usual to ensure your seedlings survive the cold weather. In the US they tend to use much thicker cloches to help protect their produce. Its not just using new protection that counts, the use of more fleece, cloches and mulch can make a massive difference to what flourishes.
Pests thrive in wetter weather so make sure you take the necessary steps to ensure your plants don’t become ridden with pests and diseases. Get creative with mulch, use a more varied range of material and provide your plants with both shelter and nutrients while avoiding unnecessary chemicals!
Let us know how you plan to combat climate change in your garden by commenting below!