Going Green: 4 Ways Your Yard Can Help The Environment
Your yard can still be the gem of the neighborhood and contribute to the stability of the natural environment instead of causing pollution.
Many aspects of a lawn, from chemical runoff into waterways to the elimination of natural areas to support wildlife cause problems for the environment. Here are four ways you can go green in your yard to benefit the environment.
Reseed Your Lawn
Depending on your climate zone, you could benefit by reseeding your lawn with a variety of turf grass that grows slowly and evenly, requiring less mowing and trimming. Even the best lawns become a mix of grass and weed types as time goes on. Different grass varieties grow at different rates. Weed plants often grow much faster than turf grasses. This results in the uneven look in your lawn requiring frequent mowing, which burns fossil fuels.
Fertilizing a lawn that contains the wrong grass mix varieties just makes it worse. Regular reseeding of your lawn using the perfect mix of seasonal grasses made for your climate helps you reduce time spent mowing. Every hour the gas engine on lawn equipment is not running, the better it is for the environment.
Plant Flowering Plants for Bees
Colony Collapse Disorder has greatly affected managed bee populations, but wild bees are also dying off in record numbers. Bees are needed for pollinating the flowers in your yard as well as staple food products that feed the world. You can support health bee populations by planting flowering plants in your yard. From cherry trees to bee balm, there are many flowering plants available for just about every climate zone to help support healthy wild bee populations.
Ease the Chemical Load
Instead of buying a bottle or bag of chemicals to fertilize your lawn or garden or to control pests, consider natural over synthetic options. For example, ladybugs are a beneficial insect that eats plant-infesting aphids and other pests. You can attract them to your garden by planting colorful plants and flowers. They will eat a lot of the pests that harm plants, and this is more earth-friendly that spraying chemicals that indiscriminately kill pests and beneficial insects. Also, choosing an organic fertilizer, such as that offered by places like Nature Safe, can help prevent phosphorus buildup on soils and protects plants from fertilizer burns.
Build Bat Boxes
Contrary to myth, bats do not try to fly into your hair, and they are not "carriers" of rabies. Yes, being mammals they can become infected, but they do not "carry" rabies. Bats also eat mosquitoes that are vectors for all kinds of dangerous pathogens from West Nile virus to Zika virus. A brown bat can eat up to 1,000 mosquitoes in an hour.
Buying or building some bat boxes invites a few of these little critters to work as aerial stealth fighters that will consume huge amounts of potentially harmful insects without needing to resort to chemical sprays, which are known to be poisonous to humans as well as insects.
Chemicals need reapplied often to continue the positive effect you are looking to achieve, whether it be killing bugs or promoting plant growth. Choosing natural methods helps get your outdoor space into an equilibrium with nature while still preserving the manicured beauty you seek. The natural approach requires a little more effort up front but then reduces the amount of work you have to do to maintain it. Plus, it helps protect the planet as well as you and your family from risky products that come with so many warning that the labels on the bottles peel back to reveal more pages of warnings and instructions.
This blog was developed by Nature Safe. All posts, sponsored and un-sponsored have been reviewed and approved by the Sustainable Community Media Editorial Team to ensure quality, relevance/usefulness and objectivity.