Gardens – Home Design, Garden & Architecture Blog Magazine Interior Design, DIY Creative Ideas, Craft, Home and Garden Ideas | GoodsHomeDesign Sun, 25 Feb 2024 23:54:04 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Study Finds That Urban Agriculture Must Be Carefully Planned to Have Climate Benefits Sun, 25 Feb 2024 14:53:20 +0000

The University of Michigan-led international study sheds light on the complex relationship between urban agriculture and its climate impact. The findings reveal that, on average, fruits and vegetables grown in urban farms and gardens have a carbon footprint six times greater than conventionally grown produce. However, the study also identifies exceptions, such as tomatoes grown in open-air urban plots and air-freighted crops like asparagus, which demonstrated lower carbon intensities than their conventional counterparts. The research underscores the need for careful planning and management in urban agriculture to maximize its climate benefits. The study’s lead author, Jason Hawes, suggests that practitioners can reduce their climate impacts by choosing specific crops, altering site designs, and adopting sustainable management practices.

Urban agriculture has gained popularity as a means of promoting sustainability in cities, offering social, nutritional, and environmental benefits. Despite the well-documented advantages, the carbon footprint of urban agriculture has been understudied, with previous research focusing on high-tech methods rather than the more common low-tech practices. This new study, involving 73 urban farms and gardens across five countries, is the largest of its kind to compare the carbon footprints of urban and conventional agriculture. The findings emphasize the importance of extending the lifetimes of urban agriculture infrastructure, utilizing urban wastes as inputs, and maximizing social benefits to make low-tech urban agriculture more carbon-competitive with conventional methods. The study provides valuable insights for urban planners, policymakers, and practitioners seeking to integrate sustainable agriculture into the fabric of future cities.

]]> 0
Preparing Your Garden for a Bountiful Spring: Expert Tips and Tricks Sun, 18 Feb 2024 17:46:34 +0000

Preparing your garden for a bountiful spring involves a holistic approach, as advised by DIY expert Glen Peskett. February, according to Peskett, is the opportune time to commence these preparations, ensuring that every element in the garden contributes to a seamless transition into the season of growth. Peskett underscores the significance of addressing seemingly mundane tasks, such as repairing garden fixtures and checking the health of soil, to set the stage for a vibrant and productive garden. Starting with the supporting cast of garden elements, Peskett suggests repairing or replacing outdoor furniture and inspecting patios, emphasizing their role in creating a safe and aesthetically pleasing environment for both gardeners and plants.

Glen Peskett’s spring preparation guide extends beyond surface-level tasks to focus on the infrastructure that supports plant life. He highlights the importance of checking and fixing garden structures, servicing tools, and sharpening blades to streamline the planting process. The core of garden readiness, according to Peskett, lies in soil health. Assessing soil composition, adjusting pH levels, and incorporating soil amendments ensure a nurturing ground for plants. Peskett emphasizes the significance of aeration and dethatching before planting, enabling better access for air, water, and nutrients to reach plant roots. Beyond structural and soil preparations, Peskett advocates for organized shed storage, clean gutters, and techniques like pest management, composting, and propagation to enhance the garden’s vitality and productivity. With a comprehensive approach, Peskett’s advice serves as a blueprint for gardeners seeking a harmonious balance of beauty and bounty in their spring gardens.

]]> 0
How to Make a Living Wall That Brings the Outdoors In Fri, 09 Feb 2024 21:57:00 +0000

Living walls, also known as vertical gardens or plant walls, offer an innovative and visually pleasing way to introduce greenery into both indoor and outdoor spaces, particularly in smaller areas where traditional gardens may not be feasible. These panels of flourishing plants serve as a decorative design solution, transforming plain walls into vibrant, living canvases. To create a successful living wall, meticulous planning is essential, taking into account factors such as lighting conditions, water requirements, and maintenance needs of the chosen plants.

Jenny Davis, Head of Marketing at Forest Garden, highlights the growing popularity of living walls, emphasizing their versatility in bringing color and life to exterior walls while effectively concealing unattractive features. As homeowners seek creative ways to maximize every inch of their gardens, living walls emerge as a brilliant hack for turning vertical spaces into thriving pockets of nature. However, the process of establishing a living wall requires careful consideration, from selecting the appropriate system, such as multi-pocket hanging planters or modular panels, to ensuring the framework’s sturdiness and compatibility with the chosen plants.

Choosing the right plants is crucial for the success of a living wall. Whether opting for cascading vines, air-purifying plants, or a mix of herbs, fruits, grasses, and ferns, it’s essential to assess sunlight exposure, water requirements, and growth habits. According to Hannah Rouch, a secondhand trends expert at Gumtree, selecting suitable plants and placing them in designated spaces within the chosen framework makes the design process more straightforward. Additionally, the choice of a growing medium, whether soilless mixes, coco coir, or specialized mediums designed for vertical gardens, plays a crucial role in ensuring the plants thrive in their vertical habitat. Regular monitoring, appropriate watering methods, and addressing any issues promptly contribute to maintaining a healthy and vibrant living wall.

]]> 0
Coastal Garden Ideas are a Major Trend for 2024 – Here’s How to Add Some Seaside Magic to Your Outdoor Space Fri, 09 Feb 2024 21:11:51 +0000

In 2024, coastal garden ideas have emerged as a significant trend, providing a refreshing alternative to traditional planting schemes. With gardens facing challenges such as strong winds, rising temperatures, and heavy rainfall, designers are increasingly turning towards storm-resilient coastal plants. This shift is notably showcased at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, where designer Lucy Mitchell aims to introduce enthusiasts to tough and tolerant plants capable of withstanding the turbulent weather patterns experienced in the UK. The spotlight on these resilient coastal plants aligns with the growing popularity of Nordic coastal gardens on social media platforms, offering ample inspiration to infuse seaside magic into outdoor spaces.

To bring the coastal charm to your garden, consider the following ideas. First, opt for coastal-inspired plants that can withstand poor soil quality, blustery winds, and salty air. A gravel garden can provide an elegant and storm-resistant alternative to traditional planting while creating a windbreak that helps protect delicate plants from harsh weather conditions. Ensure there’s a comfortable seating area to fully enjoy the transformed space, and add a water feature to evoke the soothing ambiance of the seaside. Raised beds offer a practical solution for managing challenging soil conditions. Incorporate beach-inspired elements to add a playful touch to the coastal theme. Finally, don’t forget to include ornamental grasses, such as the helictotrichon sempervirens, to introduce movement and texture while preventing soil erosion.

According to The Wildlife Trusts, plants with fibrous root systems, like grasses, are crucial for preventing soil erosion in gardens with poor, light soil. The helictotrichon sempervirens, with its tightly rolled, blue-grey leaves, stands out as an excellent choice for a coastal garden, requiring minimal maintenance as an evergreen. As garden enthusiasts embrace the coastal trend, incorporating resilient plants and thoughtful design elements can transform outdoor spaces into havens of seaside magic.

]]> 0
Solve Stormwater Problems By Building Your Own Rain Garden Wed, 31 Jan 2024 19:16:55 +0000

Solving stormwater problems can be a rewarding endeavor, especially when considering the environmental impact of excessive water runoff. A rain garden emerges as a practical and aesthetically pleasing solution for those plagued by waterlogged yards. Contrary to its name, a rain garden isn’t a waterlogged expanse; rather, it consists of native shrubs, perennial plants, and flowers planted in a carefully designed depression, usually positioned toward the back of a yard on a natural slope. This unique garden is engineered to capture rain runoff from roofs, driveways, lawns, and other surfaces, providing an effective means of processing up to 90% of nutrients, chemicals, and pollutants present in rainwater runoff.

Rain gardens play a crucial role in mitigating the environmental impact of rain runoff, which often carries harmful contaminants. When rainwater flows over surfaces laden with chemicals and pollutants, it collects these substances and carries them untreated into rivers, oceans, and natural water systems. By strategically placing rain gardens to intercept and process this runoff, individuals can contribute to cleaner and healthier water systems. This is particularly important in regions experiencing higher-than-average rainfall or periods of intense storms, as stormwater runoff can become increasingly toxic to the environment.

Creating a rain garden is a straightforward process that involves careful planning and execution. Positioning the garden in an area that easily captures roof and house water runoff is key. The garden should be located at the bottom of the yard on a downward slope, allowing rain to naturally flow into the depression. The soil preparation is crucial, with clay-based soil recommended for its lower percolation rate, facilitating the slow drainage necessary for contaminant and sediment capture. Plant selection is also essential, with a mix of natives and general plants inside the garden and marginal plants lining the outside, all tolerant of excess water. The size of the rain garden is a critical factor, ideally estimated at about 20% of the size of the property’s roof, patio, or deck that drains into it. Choosing Australian native plants, such as banksia, grevillea, dianella, and bottlebrush, enhances the garden’s effectiveness in managing stormwater runoff. Ultimately, building a rain garden is an eco-friendly and practical way to address stormwater issues and contribute to the overall health of the environment.

]]> 0
Tone it Down: Why Too Much Artificial Lighting is Bad for Your Garden Sat, 13 Jan 2024 17:25:10 +0000

Excessive artificial lighting in gardens poses multifaceted challenges to both the natural world and human well-being. The impact of light pollution extends beyond mere annoyance; it disrupts the delicate balance of ecosystems and interferes with the behavior and life cycles of various species. In rural settings like the Irish countryside, where the night sky offers a breathtaking celestial display, the encroachment of artificial lighting has become a pervasive issue, dulling the brilliance of stars and constellations. Moreover, the unintended consequences of this light intrusion extend to the insect population, with studies estimating significant mortality among flying insects attracted to artificial lights. The intricate web of life, from beetles to moths, is affected, and the repercussions cascade through ecosystems, influencing migration, reproduction, and predator-prey relationships.

The negative effects of excessive garden lighting extend beyond insects to impact birdlife, bats, hedgehogs, and amphibians. Nocturnal animals alter their behavior and routines in response to artificial illumination, affecting hunting patterns, nesting habits, and even the timing of egg-laying. Bright lights disrupt the essential process of night pollination conducted by moths, undermining their ability to identify suitable flowers. Additionally, humans are not immune to the consequences of excessive artificial lighting, as it disrupts natural circadian rhythms, impacting melatonin levels and subsequently affecting sleep patterns, moods, and the immune system. Thus, as stewards of outdoor spaces, individuals are encouraged to adopt thoughtful lighting practices, minimizing the detrimental effects on both the environment and personal well-being. Strategies such as using warmer-colored lights, incorporating motion sensors, and limiting the intensity and duration of illumination contribute to a more sustainable and harmonious coexistence between human activity and the natural world.

]]> 0
Getting School Kids Gardening Pays Off for Eating Habits Sat, 13 Jan 2024 17:01:10 +0000

Engaging school children in gardening and food preparation classes can have a profound impact on their lifelong eating habits, according to a recent study conducted by the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health. Participants in a gardening and food education program, specifically the FoodPrints program offered in 20 elementary schools in Washington, D.C., reported increased confidence in choosing healthy foods and preparing nutritious dishes. The positive habits cultivated during the program persisted as the children grew older and influenced their dietary choices even into adolescence. The study involved focus groups comprised of current and past participants in the FoodPrints program, ranging from pre-kindergarten to ninth grade. Students actively participated in growing vegetables and fruits in school gardens, harvesting produce, and using it to prepare healthy meals.

The program not only enhanced the children’s appreciation for fresh foods but also equipped them with valuable cooking skills and confidence in the kitchen. Importantly, the positive impact extended beyond the students themselves, with parents adopting healthier food options inspired by their children’s newfound preferences and culinary skills. The findings suggest that early exposure to gardening and food education programs can contribute to long-lasting improvements in dietary choices and overall health. The researchers emphasize the potential of such initiatives to instill a lasting desire for fresh, healthy food in young individuals, fostering a positive attitude toward nutrition that persists into adulthood.

]]> 0
Modular App-Controlled Vertical Garden Stacks Greens Indoors or Out Sat, 13 Jan 2024 16:41:52 +0000

Hexagro’s latest innovation, the Clovy, presents an ingenious solution for individuals seeking to bring a touch of nature into their homes, even with limited space. This modular, app-controlled vertical garden is designed for both indoor and outdoor use, catering to those with a penchant for gardening but lacking the necessary space. The system offers the flexibility of hydroponics or aeroponics, allowing users to choose their preferred cultivation method. The stackable design enables the garden to grow taller, accommodating the development of users’ green thumbs over time. The pods, where plants are housed, are constructed from recycled materials or agricultural waste, aligning with Hexagro’s commitment to sustainability.

One of the standout features of Clovy is its Internet of Things (IoT) irrigation system, which eliminates the hassle of daily watering. Through a companion mobile app, users gain fine control over the irrigation process, and an AI-powered cultivation assistant named Hexbee guides them through plant care and maintenance. The IoT system allows users to schedule irrigation at specific times and days, optimizing water consumption, reducing waste, and promoting responsible water resource management. Furthermore, the system includes electrical outlets for easy automation and connection to additional electronic devices, enhancing the overall convenience of the vertical garden.

Hexagro caters to different user preferences with the Clovy system, offering a standard version made from 100% recycled plastic in small or large configurations. Additionally, an eco-premium option is available, crafted from upcycled bio-composite materials sourced from agricultural waste. The system features a container base with a low-pressure pump and a two-week water supply, and users receive notifications when the nutrient solution is running low. Each pod can host up to four different plants, providing a versatile and customizable gardening experience. The Clovy is currently seeking production funds on Kickstarter, offering backers the opportunity to secure their own unit with perks starting at €139 (~US$145) for a small standard model or €159 ($165) for a small premium. If the crowdfunding campaign proceeds as planned, shipping is expected to commence in April 2024.

]]> 0
Mason Jar Hydroponic Kit Set with Organic Seeds Fri, 12 Jan 2024 00:47:01 +0000

This self-watering growing kit requires very low daily maintenance. The wick will pull water from the jar to the plant root which ensures the plant takes enough water it needs. No need to water frequently. Just refill the jar when there is not much water left.

This artistic Mediterranean Herb Mix mason jar set can lighten up any home. You can put it on your windowsill, your kitchen counter or anywhere you like. All the seeds are heirloom seeds. We assure you that you can purchase with confidence for you and your loved ones.

You can plant and have easy access to your favorite herbs at home with this kit. Nothing is more exciting than having your own home grown fresh herbs every day. These plant herbs will surely add flavor to your dishes and more color to your home.

Great Gardening Gift
This Mediterranean Herb Mix garden bundle is a perfect gift for anyone: cooking enthusiasts, aspiring gardeners, and even those who just want to grow something. This is available in the link below…

Find it HERE…

]]> 0