To many people, global warming is just something that appears in the news or is a subject for politicians and scientists. But for many of us, who we are seriously concerned with the future of our habitat, it is a serious matter, and we want to collaborate in improving the situation. Because, as France’s president stated so clearly:
“There is no Planet B.”
The great news is that we can all help to improve the situation, starting with our gardens. Besides, setting an example on how to adapt to a changing climate can be fun and easy.
So here you have some tips on how to adapt your garden to the changing environment.
Be ready to adapt
Adapting is not such a difficult task. It simply means being able to work with the conditions you have. Global warming is changing those conditions in a manner that affects all of us equally. Longer pollen seasons may mean that allergy sufferers will have to tolerate longer periods of huffing and wheezing. Time differences in plant cycles may result in bees arriving too late and missing their cycle of pollination, and, in turn, affecting your flowers and plants.
From humans to animals and plants, we all need to be ready for a change. Fortunately for us humans, we have technology and knowledge on our side. Both of them can be generally grouped into two areas: plant selection and watering.
Plan your garden
Plants are already adapting to the changing conditions. Some are narrowing their leaves, while others are closing their pores, in order to adapt to drier conditions. This means that you can keep some of the indigenous ones.
You can also help your plants to adapt. Some organizations suggest using techniques that mix seeds from other areas with the local ones. One of these technologies is climate-adjusted provenancing, which rests on the exploitation of natural genetic variability of plants and their inherent capacity to adapt to environmental change.
You may need to introduce new species, which are better adapted to cope with warmer and drier conditions. This is particularly important when considering long-lived species, such as trees. A tree that is optimal for the present conditions, may be struggling 30 years from now.
Also, you may consider other options, such as having a vegetable garden, where you can grow those local veggies that you love so much. The advantages are plenty. You can save money, eat food free of dangerous chemicals, and contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions.
Check online sites where you can find information on what, when and where to grow in your country. Ask your local supplier, and local organizations, who may already have the right answers to your questions.
Watering: plan for an efficient use
Water availability is changing with climate change. This has led to increased water bills, water use restrictions, and in many cases soil transformation.
The solution is simple: smart planning of your water needs. So here are certain tips that can help you use your water resources more efficiently:
- Estimate your water needs. This will give you a good idea of the resources you need.
- Water at the right time. Watering your plants early in the morning gives them time to absorb the water before it evaporates with the heat of the day.
- Arrange your plants according to their water needs. This will help you to water properly and ensure that the right amount of water goes to the right plants.
- Use a good irrigation system. Set the timer to water when it is not so hot. Consider using a drip irrigation system. It can save more than 50% of the water used by other systems. Sunken plastic pots can also help to aim the water where it’s more needed.
- Consider ways to collect rainwater. It is pure and thus the best for your plants.
- Build structures that protect your plants from intense heat. This will reduce their need for water.
- Add organic compost regularly. Good soil is better at retaining water.
- Use nature’s wisdom and mulch your plants. It helps reduce evaporation.
Be open to other options
Contributing to a better environment can also be very exciting to those living in other more restricting places. Different initiatives include rooftop and balcony gardens, which can promote heat conservation, species preservation, and carbon reduction. Besides you can use these options to plant therapeutic plants and even veggies and fruits. All these, in an organic way!
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