5 Easy Ways to Improve Your Green Living Space
April 19, 2012
Small changes make a big difference, especially when it comes to your property. No matter what time of the season, each and every homeowner can enjoy the environmental benefits that come from proper care of their green living space.
Five easy steps to enhance the natural beauty of your outdoor living space:
Take Care of Your Grass – There are many environmental benefits that come along with proper lawn care. A thick, green turf is important to reducing runoff and soil erosion, conserving ground water, and producing oxygen. Lawns also provide benefits that extend past the environmental by increasing your home’s value. This fact is often overlooked, but your lawn is an extension of your home; with proper care, a maintained lawn can significantly increase property value.
Add Some Color – Starting a garden is a great way to add beauty and color to your outdoor space. A garden draws attention to the time you invest in your property and creates an environment that is known to lower blood pressure and reduce tension. It is important to consider choosing plants that work best in our climate such as Bleeding Hearts, Virginia Bluebells, or Rhododendrons. These plants are just a few that work best in our area’s clay soils and will help to ensure a beautiful garden each year with easy maintenance.
Prune Trees & Shrubs – For established landscape shrubs and trees, it is important that regular maintenance be performed to keep them in good standing. Proper pruning is a good way to prevent bigger problems that can arise as the season advances. Pruning can lead to better blooms, stable growth, and even rejuvenate older plantings. However, improper pruning can do more harm than neglect so make sure to do your research BEFORE you start!
Start a Compost Pile – One of the easiest ways to be more “green” is to start a compost pile. Old coffee grounds and filters, banana peels, egg shells, and even dryer lint can add a lot to your yard once they have broken down into compost. Create a space in your lawn (away from the home) designated to combining these materials with leaves, wood chips, and yard clippings. As these items break down, they create a nutrient filled material that can be added to your gardens to prevent disease, repel pests, and help the soil retain moisture between watering. A compost pile also helps by reducing your waste in the community and extends the life of your landfill.
Plant a Tree – As communities expand they often start off without trees due to the construction. A community without trees leads to high cooling costs, less oxygen, and pollution build-up. Trees keep heat out of a home and have been shown to cool the outside temperatures with a difference up to 31* than areas without trees. Trees also enhance the beauty of your lawn as they change their appearance all year round. There are many inexpensive and fast growing trees that are great additions to neighborhoods to quickly reverse the effects of new construction and improve your outdoor space with little effort.