Posted on: 9 March 2015
Landscaping is an imperative part of your home's curb appeal and value. From professional flowerbeds and hardscapes to herb gardens and thriving trees, it is easy to see how plants, flowers, and trees can improve your home's exterior. Unfortunately, you may not be placing enough importance on your lawn. Considering your grass encompasses the majority of your landscape, ensuring it is neat, lush, and green is key to successful curb appeal.
Of course, you probably know how to mow, but you may not understand the other maintenance required for your lawn. While necessary for protecting or improving your lawn, many products and techniques can damage your surrounding environment. Using this guide, you can improve your grass in an eco-friendly manner.
While surprising to hear, 7.8 billion gallons of daily water usage goes towards outdoor use. This use may be for washing cars or outdoor living areas, but a good portion goes towards watering landscaping. Thankfully, conserving water used in landscaping is possible with the following tips:
- Choose Right – Before installing plants or grass seed, ensure they work well with your local climate. If you live in hot, dry areas, use drought-tolerant plants. Also, avoid using plants that are more difficult to establish or susceptible to disease. These plants are not only challenging to grow and maintain, but require an overwhelming amount of attention and water.
- Reduce Turf – Your lawn most likely takes up a large part of your landscape. While it is an appealing backdrop for shrubs, trees, and flowers, it also requires an increased amount of water to maintain its beauty and strength. Design your landscape with more natural areas, flowerbeds, and hardscapes using pine straw, mulch, and even gravel. By reducing the amount of grass in your landscape, you will reduce your outdoor water usage.
Increasing the nutrient content in your soil is important for improving the color and strength of your grass. Unfortunately, most of the fertilizers available contain harsh ingredients that may be toxic to surrounding landscaping and wildlife. Ammonia is a common chemical in fertilizing products, but its acidic properties actually decrease the amount of nutrients in your soil. In addition, ammonia releases carbon dioxide, which pollutes the environment and increases global warming.
To fertilize you lawn in a safe, natural way, consider composting using the following steps:
- Fill a lidded container with leaves from your trees, pieces of cardboard, grass clippings, and newspapers. Choose a storage tote with lid or a specialty garden container.
- Periodically add kitchen scraps into the bin. Eggshells, vegetables, fruit, and coffee grounds are great options.
- Stack the different ingredients and continue adding your kitchen scraps into the bin.
- Dampen the interior items every other day with your garden hose.
- Every other day, use your hands to mix the items. Be sure to wear gloves.
Over time, the ingredients will break down and make a nutrient-rich fertilizer for your lawn and other landscaping elements. Spread the mixture over your lawn and around shrubs, trees, and flowerbeds in the spring and fall.
Maintaining traditional lawns requires a great deal of time and effort, even while conserving water and using eco-friendly fertilizers. To truly ensure your green is green, invest in an artificial turf to replace your lawn. In the past, artificial grass appeared plastic-y and offered very little appeal. Today, synthetic grass is realistic, appealing, and easy to maintain.
Unfortunately, you may worry about the cost. While more expensive than planting traditional grass seed, you will see a higher return on your investment. Since artificial lawns do not require watering, you will reduce your monthly water bills. Also, aerating, reseeding, and fertilizing is not necessary since it is permanent. Lastly, artificial lawns do not require mowing or weeding, so you will reduce the time and effort necessary for maintaining traditional grass.
Landscaping can be costly and overwhelming at times. However, it is important for your home's overall value. Using this guide, your lawn will be green in a safe, natural manner.Share