1. larger Garden Beds

Collectively our home landscapes can cause vast corridors of habitat. I would even go so far as to say they supply an important type that is new of refuge. Forgo the standard yard should you want to produce habitat in your landscape since yard does not contribute to nearby habitats and it requires plenty resources to keep up it — water, mowing, blowing, fertilizing.

If you're constructing a new landscape, let your builder or designer know you'd like to reduce the lawn with garden beds and islands. It can be as simple as increasing your foundation beds from 4 feet deep to 8 or even to 12 feet deep. Deeper beds open up the possibility for more plant that is diverse, from shrubs to plants to grasses to ground covers, which increases habitat for the wildlife we like to see.




If you have an established landscape with lawn, work with a landscape professional and selectively eradicate an area you don't need or seldom use with a sod cutter, solarization or sheet mulch. Don't want any lawn that is traditional? Think about planting a sedge (Carex spp.) or grass meadow.

Work with

2. More plants that are native

Gardening together with your landscape and environment is gardening smartly. Native plants, when properly sited, can reduce maintenance (replacement costs and watering needs, among other items) since they're adapted to your locale. Of course, indigenous flowers are also a boon to creatures which have developed unique relationships with them as time passes. Butterflies and moths, for example, require host flowers to lay their eggs, plus some bees that are native for pollen on certain flowers at certain times during the year.

We can provide for countless relationships which can be happening above and below the soil, even when we can not see them. When you use plants that grow together in the wild, placing them near one another as they would naturally occur, you're emulating a relationship that works aesthetically and practically.




3. Healthy Soil
I am a champ of less work, so they do below the soil line effectively for me building healthy soil starts with selecting the right plants and using what. There are plants with deep taproots, those with shallow root that is fibrous and several that reach between. Placing flowers with various root kinds together — instead of filling a bed with flowers that all have actually the same root mass — will create zones of soil life at every level. Healthy soils increase plant health and sequester greater amounts of carbon through the air.

I am perhaps not a fan of tilling or adding deep degrees of amendments to ornamental perennial beds — it is costly and destroys soil structure and life. I do like adding a thin layer of compost and mulch that is organicleaf mold, wood potato chips or the cuttings of dead flowers through the spring cleaning) on top of the soil.

Consider meadow and prairie flowers — many lose up to one-third of the origins each year. As those origins decay, they obviously add organic matter. This is the reason the Midwest is filled with line crop areas — the prairies produced rich soil.




4. Less Water Runoff
There is a great deal you can do because of the water that enters your landscape, and it doesn't have to simply take investment that is much. Rain gardens collect water from downspouts or hard surfaces and slow the flow of water off a landscape, cleaning it because it gradually soaks in to the ground and recharges the aquifers.

Landscape elements like bioswales and dry creek beds, permeable paving and even rain barrels work together to further handle water responsibly in our landscapes, reducing erosion as well as runoff that overwhelms storm drains and pollutes water systems downstream.

5. Trees and Shrubs for Energy Savings

Trees are like mini ecosystems for wildlife, providing meals, shelter and nesting internet sites. Trees and shrubs can reduce energy consumption also year-round.

Big canopy that is deciduous like oaks and elms on the south and west sides of the home, or wherever you receive intense summer sun, can help cool your home in summer. Shrubs planted along these walls will help regulate temperature also. Conifers planted downwind from prevailing winds can slow or stop cold weather winds from reaching your property — those winds that sneak through gaps around windows and doors, and make you reach for the thermostat.




Reducing simply how much you need to heat up and cool your property will not only save your self power, it will decrease your bills — all because you planted a few gorgeous trees and shrubs.

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