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An Introduction To Sustainable Gardening

Climate change is one of the biggest challenges we face today. There are lots of little things you can do to make a difference, starting in your own backyard.

Here are a few easy ways to get started:

plants being watered plants being watered

1. Water

  • Where possible, try to capture rainwater and grey water for garden use
  • Avoid using sprinklers, instead try to water directly to the roots by hand or using soaker or drip irrigation, preferably in the morning
  • Group plants with similar water needs
  • Weed regularly, because weeds also use up for water
compost with worms compost with worms

2. Compost and mulch

  • Compost, mulch and worm castings improve soil and retain more water, which is better for plant growth so you don't have to water as much
  • Make your own compost using yard clippings and kitchen scraps
  • Watch our handy video on how to make a worm farm
  • Mulching also helps with weed control
  • Mulch is available in a range of varieties for different uses including pea straw, water saving, lucerne and bark chips for landscaping
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3. Types of plants

Where possible use plants that are native to your area - they will have a better chance of survival, need less upkeep, and attract native animals

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4. Fertilisers

  • Use natural fertilisers because they contain the right nutrients for the soil and can be absorbed more easily
  • Use natural fertilisers such as compost, cow or chicken manure, rock phosphate, kelp, seaweed, fish meal etc.
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5. Pest and disease control

  • Select pest resistant plants and ensure good air circulation
  • Use companion planting to confuse or repel pests
  • Always try the least toxic treatment first then work your way up from there
  • Avoid broad spectrum insecticides
  • Weed by hand wherever possible
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6. Lawn

  • Limit the size of your lawn by making garden beds larger or adding pavers
  • Use a hand push lawn mower
  • Try native ground cover as an alternative
man with recycled bottles man with recycled bottles

7. Recycle and re-use

  • Re-use plastic plant pots
  • Grow your own plants from seeds, cuttings or by dividing existing plants
  • Repair and recycle garden furniture rather than throwing it away
  • Re-use excess timber and building supplies to make planters, sheds, benches, garden furniture etc.
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