Looking to make some upgrades to your landscaping this year? Make sure you keep the environment in mind during your planning. A lot of people are already aware of how to conserve energy within their homes, but here are some tips to think about for your surrounding landscaping. (photo at right by cehwiedel.com)
Incorporate Native Plants
When planning your landscape, incorporating native plants is always a good idea. They are adapted to your area and require less maintenance and water than exotic plants. You can also reduce the need for pesticides because they’re more resistant to pests and diseases. You don’t need to exclude foreign plants from your landscaping, but incorporating natives in your plan can make a big difference.
Conserve Energy with Solar Powered Lights
Using a few solar powered landscaping lights, as opposed to an entirely electric powered lighting system, can help to reduce your overall energy use.
Use Natural/Organic Fertilizers for Maintenance
Using just a couple natural products (fertilizer, pesticides, etc.) can help by reducing the amount of potentially harmful wastewater runoff in the environment. This can also create a healthier environment for your family and pets
Plant Shade Trees to Reduce Energy Use
Planting deciduous trees (trees that drop their leaves in the fall) is a great way to help reduce the work load on your HVAC systems by reducing the direct sun on your home. When these trees drop their leaves, they also allow sunlight to warm a home during the winter. If possible, plant tall trees on the east and west-facing sides of the house. Planting trees on the south facing side of your home can help shade the roof, as the sun will not hit that side of the house much during the summer.