Spring has finally sprung, and the weather makes it the perfect time to begin your new garden. The month of April finds us celebrating Earth Day!
April 22 is the day to celebrate our beautiful earth and all of the efficient ways we can ensure its preservation. After all, we are all in this together, and there are many ways we can help—like starting a garden!
Here is everything you need to know about how to create the perfect garden to honor Earth Day:
What is Earth Day?
Earth Day began on April 22, 1970. It was born from the idea of the modern-day environmental movement.
Back in the 1960s, Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring was released and became an instant New York Times bestseller. The book was written to raise public awareness of the environment and the pivotal role we all play in its preservation. This began the trailblazing path toward the Earth Day we celebrate today.
The 1970 Earth Day gave rise to the emerging environmental issues and awareness, raising consciousness and putting the safety of the environment on full display, front and center. The traditions are set and each April 22 is the day to honor the Earth and to reduce our carbon footprints as much as possible.
How You Can Contribute to Earth Day
You may be wondering what contribution of yours can actually make an impact on the earth. First and foremost, consider the fact you can contribute to the health of the world every day, not just on Earth Day.
Here are some ways you can contribute:
- Start a compost bin. This can help fertilize your garden. Get your friends, family, and neighbors in on it too!
- Plant a tree—or many. Trees are crucial and act as the Earth’s lungs. The more trees, the greener and the merrier.
- Switch out your lightbulbs. You can reduce your own energy cost and prove more efficient by switching to energy-efficient LED bulbs in your home. Another plus? They last a long time.
- Opt-out of taking the car. If you can, walk and carpool to your destination. It is no secret we are poisoning our atmosphere with incessant pollution.
- Don’t stall in the shower. Many enjoy long, hot showers—or even baths—but this wastes water. It is essential to conserve water, so jump in, wash up, and shut off the water. This applies to brushing your teeth—shut off the water while you brush!
How to Start a Garden
Starting a garden is incredibly beneficial to Mother Earth. It helps in the following ways:
- Cleans groundwater
- Reduces pollution
- Reduces carbon footprint
- Reduces noise pollution
- Reduces energy costs (by up to 20%!)
- Saves on your food bill
Here are the best ways to begin your new garden:
Choose the Location
To begin your garden, you must choose where you want to begin. Find a flat area in your yard that is sun-filled and easy to dig. You may opt for raised garden beds if you are unfamiliar with the soil in your state.
The Right Plants
You must know the right plants for your specific yard. Take into consideration the climate of your location. Research low-maintenance plants that are most adaptable to your environment including the pests and the soil. Rule #1: If you will not eat your plants, do not plant them!
To perfectly insulate your fence for not only more privacy but more insulation, implement plant “climbers” and shrubs on your fences and walls. These clingy plants will attach themselves to the fence and provide a layer of insulation—and beauty—to your backyard.
Purchase Garden Tools
Before you begin digging, you must have the proper gardening tools. These are the most common garden tools:
- Garden hoe
- Hand tools
- Leaf rake
- Scuffle hoe
Test and Purchase Soil
You may want to test your soil to see what you are working with. You will want to know if you have alkaline, neutral pH, or acidic soil. You also want to check if your soil is contaminated.
A rule of thumb is to have soil with a pH around 7, which reads as ‘neutral’. You can then “build” your soil by using sod. Cut the sod into chunks and mix it into your natural soil. You also have the option to put down wet cardboard or newspaper and “build” the sod and soil on top, where you will begin planting your seeds.
Buy Seeds or Transplants
Your next step to a successful garden is to pick the seeds of your choice. Check online or on the back of the seed packets for the best time to plant the seeds.
You can also choose to purchase transplants or seeds that have already sprouted into plants. Ensure the transplants are not yellowing, have any holes from pests, or are sprayed with potentially harmful pesticides.
It’s Time to Plant!
Follow the basic instructions on the back of the seed packet to know how deep and how far apart to plant the seeds. Watering schedules may vary, so ensure you know what each individual plant needs to thrive.
Do not plant in the winter as the cold ground and frost will kill any chance of a plant from sprouting. In addition, keep a careful watch over young plants as they can be damaged faster than more mature plants.
Enjoy Earth Day
Bottom line, you can contribute to the health of the world by the simple steps up above. You are more powerful than you believe as all it takes is one person to begin to make a difference.
Planting a garden breathes life into the air and releases oxygen through photosynthesis. Cleaner air is beneficial for everyone! Not only can your garden help heal the earth, but they are also a wonderful conversation starter, plate filler, and beautiful for the eyes.
Happy Spring and happy planting!