Indoors or out, we've got tips for more environmentally-friendly growing
Gardening is much more than a relaxing way to beautify the place you live. From a spacious outdoor oasis to an indoor window box, gardening can improve air quality, relieve stress, and connect us more deeply to the natural world and the environment.
Which is why, no matter how you like to garden, it's important to keep efficiency and sustainability in mind. In this post we've gathered some easy tips and practical products that can help your indoor – or outdoor—garden stay green.
The Great Outdoors: Greener Lawn and Garden Care
Creating and nurturing an outdoor oasis is a perfect way to enjoy summertime. And whether you have an extensive lawn to maintain, or just some planters in your outdoor space, a few simple steps can help keep your plants healthy and fresh without putting a strain on water supply.
- Choose drought-tolerant plants. Many plants are naturally adaptive to thrive in conditions without much water. A little research online (or at your local garden store) can show you which species will do well in your area.
- Water the soil, not the leaves. Water applied to the root zone helps keep evaporation to a minimum; plus, keeping water off your plants’ leaves can also control fungal blooms. Whether you use a soaking hose, an irrigation system, or a simple watering can, be sure to keep the dirt moist.
- Don’t overwater. Overwatering plants is the number one source of residential water waste. Worst of all, it's bad for your plants: as excess water will stress root systems and can cause rot and plant disease. So be sure to offer your lawn and plants the right amount to drink—on the right schedule.
- With many utilities buried just a few inches below ground, be sure to contact your 811 center before you begin digging.
Water Saving Essentials
Indoor/Urban Gardening: Fresh Possibilities Without a Yard
Just because you live in a city neighborhood or apartment, doesn't put gardening out of reach. In fact, right now "urban gardening" is having something of a moment: many who started an indoor or rooftop garden as a pandemic-era hobby are now spreading the word to friends and neighbors, and taking their own indoor gardening to new levels.
From lush rooftop spreads to window beds or hanging baskets, there's more than one way to practice your green thumb in a city environment. Container gardening is popular with those who have small patios, yards, or balconies. If you only have an indoor space, there are still lots of options. From a simple decorative living room plant, to a full hydroponic setup that puts vegetables on your table, there's no wrong way to try urban gardening. Here's a few easy ways to get started:
- Buy a tropical indoor plant from your local garden center: starting small can help you experience the joy of greening up your space, without a huge commitment.
- Start your own seeds in a seed tray: all it takes are seeds, soil, a sunlit table or windowsill...and a little patience.
- Grow grateful succulents that are easy to manage and maintain: many will grow nearly anywhere, year-round.
And remember: wherever your urban gardening exploration takes you, there are always opportunites to be more sustainable.
If you're upgrading to a hydroponic system or using grow lights, make sure they don't pull too much energy—with a smart power strip.