Sustainable Gardening

A woman kneels to smell a flower, with a watering can by her side
Gardening (thanks,!)

Some thoughts on sustainable gardening

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Here, you’ll read stuff we find interesting, cool, and all about living and building that Good Community Life. (#socialimpactbusiness)

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Approaching the hotter months, we want to talk about something that’s been occupying our minds recently: sustainability concepts within eating and gardening.

We’re all (meaning, we humans are all) feeling the increased weirdness of weather patterns, and seeing the number of serious weather occurrences around the globe. Climate change should absolutely be on everyone’s minds right now.

At an individual level, some of the best and simplest things we can do involve minute changes in the way we live, so as to most efficiently use the resources available to us. It’s extremely cool to see the number of people embracing traditional activities for reasons of both preservation and enjoyment. Gardening to grow a proportion of your own food can be fun, functional (good movement!) and has the additional benefits of providing connection to natural rhythms and cycles.

Most people will not have access to enough space, time or materials to grow enough to be 100% self-sufficient. Everyone on the ClearGivers team is #teamapartment for sure! However, we do have some achievable ways to simply supplement your grocery shop! In addition, the more plants that exist in our immediate surroundings, the more we are automatically doing to help the planet out.

Here are a few suggestions for easy-grow plants; with a few pointers as to what they require:

Team Apartment:

Tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants grow like superstars in warmer climates. They thrive in gardens, but will need more careful management on apartment balconies. Get the soil correct and you’re 80% there.

Herbs such as basil, parsley, and cilantro add micronutrients and flavour to meals and can be easily grown anywhere: garden, balcony, windowsill — wherever.

You know where leafy greens such as kale, spinach, and lettuce go! They’re easy in gardens and do-able in apartments; they grow well in cooler climates. Mind the bugs on these guys — food-safe pesticides are available.

We have a house and a yard, or an allotment!

Root vegetables such as carrots, potatoes, and onions are relatively easy to grow in a garden or allotment, and can be stored for long periods of time once harvested.

Fruit trees such as apples, peaches, and cherries grow well in gardens and provide delicious bounty in the autumn. Apples keep very well if stored correctly, and peaches and cherries are easily preserved (tinned, bottled or frozen) for longer-term use.

Berry bushes such as raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries can also provide a source of fresh fruit during the summer. These will be tricky on a balcony, but wonderful in a garden.

Visit your local independent garden centre and speak to the staff; they’re generally highly knowledgeable about the items they stock, and will be able to provide you with answers along with advice for how to achieve good growth in various items. Plus, by shopping local, you’re adding another little bit to the sustainable economy!

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