The Sustainable Garden – Biggest Trend This Season

sustainable garden

The biggest trend this season is the Sustainable Garden.

If you’ve not up to speed on sustainability trends, don’t worry.  This one is really easy to follow and it’s pretty easy to implement as well.  In fact, you probably already do to one extent or another.

vertical garden sustainable garden

Here are some of the most common features of a sustainable garden:

  • Firstly and most obviously, no chemical pesticides or herbicides.  Here are some natural alternatives.
  • Plant pollinator friendly plants that attract the bees, butterflies and birds.  Here are some suggestions and here are some more..
  • If you use lighting in your garden, make it solar, or at least LED
  • Upcycle and recycle old garden and home items as garden decor.  Recycle old pots with a new look.  Check out some ideas here and here and here and here.
  • Make your garden edible for humans as well as for birds and insects. Growing veggies and fruit and even edible flowers is a fun way to eat healthy produce without the chemicals and G.M.O. influences found in most store bought produce.
  • Make use of storm debri.  Instead of throwing away the broken branches and other debri from those storms and strong winds, collect them and use them for creating bedding borders and interesting garden pieces.
  • In the same way you can use rocks to add interest to your landscape.  In B.C. there are many places you can collect river rocks for special features in your garden.
  • Green your vertical spaces.  If have boundary walls, trellis or other upright spaces in your landscape, think about creating a vertical garden.  Here are some ideas.

We hope that this has given you some great ideas to begin looking at your garden with new eyes!  Have fun becoming a sustainable gardener – and remember that we are always available for help, advice and supplies!

DIY Compost Tips

DIY Compost

We all know that compost is a great addition to the garden and we all know that recycling is a good idea. 

So combining the two composts and making your own compost should be a great idea, right?

DIY CompostIf you’d like to try your hand at recycling your own kitchen and garden waste to create your own compost, here are some tips to help you achieve that goal.

The great thing about making your own compost is that it doesn’t need to cost you very much at all.

You don’t need to buy fancy composting systems or additive microbes or any other tools.  All you really need is a few containers to handle the various compost components during the various stages..

Your kitchen and garden waste, as it rots will create all the necessary microbes on it’s own. And all you need to do is to keep the kitchen waste in some kind of bin or container and keep the yard waste in another, bigger container.

Allow the kitchen waste to begin decomposing and then add it to the yard waste container a few times a year.

The containers can be as simple as garbage cans with holes punched into the lids to aerate them.

A few popular methods of DIY Composting:

DIY CompostSome people just put the yard waste in a big pile in a corner, out of sight.  This works but the trouble is that it can also provide a home for rats and other unwanted pests.  It’s best to keep it contained so that these critters don’t have easy access.

Others like to keep it even simpler.  They keep their kitchen waste in a container in the fridge until they’ve built up enough, then simply dig a hole and bury the waste in the designated area in the garden.  The earth takes care of the composting process and pretty soon there a lots of nice, juicy worms working away!

The key is to just get started.  It’s easy. It’s realtively quick. It’s super inexpensive.  It’s also great compost that you can then dig into your garden to enrich the soil and add vital nutrients that will keep your plants healthy and vibrant.

Please feel free to come into Tanglebank Gardens and have a chat with us about making your own compost if you have any questions or need advice.  We’re always happy to help!

 

 

5 Perfect Perennials For Shade

It’s not always easy to find the perfect perennials for shade.

Most perennials like at least a little sun.  However the following top choices will thrive in a sheltered shady spot.

  1. Shade Garden Hosta Perfect Perennials For ShadeHostas come in a variety of shapes and sizes and in a variety of colors too. There are those with variegated foliage and those with solid green in a variety of shades, as well as the ‘blue’ hostas. Whether you have a small space or a large space, Hostas are the #1 choice for shade.  Ranging in size from 6″ to 6′ you will definitely be able to find one (or a variety) that will be perfect in your garden. These shade garden staples mostly flower in spring and summer and some even have a fragrance. Best of all, they multiply so you can, after a few seasons, divide them and plant them in other shady spots as well!  These plants die back in Winter but come Spring they’ll pop up again!
  2. Perfect Perennials For ShadeGeraniums – we’re not talking about the so called geraniums you associate with Swiss Chalets, but rather the original Geraniums which spread and have a gorgeous blue or pink flower. They grow in mounds and are very easy going requiring little or no maintenance. They do die back in Winter but come Spring they’ll spring to life again and will flower from late Spring right through the Summer.
  3. Perfect Perennials For ShadeAjuga is a tough little ground cover that has dark green or even purple foliage and striking blue flowers in the spring.It’s pretty hardy and doesn’t really die off in winter.
  4. BleediHummingbird_bleeding-heart Perfect Perennials For Shadeng Heart is another very showy and very easy perennal.  Their gorgeous multilayered pink and white heart shaped flowers are a delight in Spring and early Summer. Some varieties have green foliage and others have a golden tint. These gorgeous plants die off early – mostly around June, but they will pop back up in the Spring.
  5. spring helleboresHellebores pop up early in the Spring.  They have unusual flowers that look almost as if they’re hand made from tinted silk in understated pinks, mauves and tinges of green.  These lovely plants are also known as ‘Christmas Rose’.  They will begin fading by mid Summer.

While these are the most popular and well known of shade plants, there are many more, both flowering and non-flowering.  Shade gardens can be an oasis of tranquility and cool in the heat of summer.  Come in and chat with our talented horticulturalists to find out what varieties will work best for your particular garden and preferences.