I’m Marla, The Green Home Coach. Thank you for joining me on the journey of learning about your home, and discovering how you can make some simple choices to make it an even better, greener home.
Today, we will be covering Chapter 5 of my book, Living Green Effortlessly: Simple Choices for a Better Home. Chapter 5 is about landscaping. Your home sits on the land, it interacts with that land, the land supports your home, and the landscaping is the crux of that.
Your enjoyment, recreation, and even food might be a part of the land that surrounds your home. Often, when we think of landscape, we think of curb appeal. There are many different things that can come into play with that, and that is what we will be covering today.
Health, wellness, safety, and comfort
For most of the people I talk to, their health, wellness, safety, and comfort are of utmost importance. Often, our homes are not providing that. I would like to help you find how you can do that in your own home. I’d like to help you find the things in your home that may not be working in your best interest, and I also want to help you to create a home that you enjoy, that supports you and the people that live there, and that gives you a great sense of peace, peace of mind, and wellbeing.
Little things that we can do
There are so many little things that we can do in our homes that will add up to a greener home, and I want you to live life to the fullest in your home.
Many ways to do things
There are many different ways to do things. Some of the ways that can be the most supportive of our health and wellbeing are often simple or have been around for a long time.
Your home and that landscape surrounding it
Your home and that landscape around it can even support each other in energy conservation. So, you can use the landscape surrounding your home to make your home more energy-efficient.
You can have plants planted at the proper distance around your foundation to help insulate the foundation and the bottom part of your home.
You can plant taller trees on one side of your house to be a wind-break. You can use trees or shrubs for shade. They will also lower the temperature in your home by several degrees.
The hardscape is the hard surfaces that surround the home. They can be concrete patios, driveways, or a flagstone or gravel patio. Dark concrete will absorb the heat, so it is a good option for colder climates. Lighter surfaces like light concrete will reflect the heat and help to keep the surface and the areas surrounding it cool.
Permeable materials, like stone patios, or gravel, will allow the rainwater to go through them. It will then go down into the ground and the water table.
Water is powerful, so you need to know how to manage the water around your house most effectively. Stormwater is the biggest consideration for the outside of our homes. If you have a lot of water running off of your property, into the street, and down to the watershed system, it will carry away whatever you put onto your yard, your garden, and around your house.
Chemical fertilizers or pesticides
If you have used chemical fertilizers or pesticides, it will all get washed down to the watershed, so it is always best to use as few of those substances as possible. Chemicals genetically alter or kill fish and other aquatic creatures and plants that form part of the closed water system on earth.
To keep more water on your property
To keep more water on your property, you can either use rain barrels or rain gardens.
There are ways to install sprinkler systems so that they are more water-efficient. Some of that is in the settings. Some of it is in the choice of sprinkler-heads, and some of it is adding a rain sensor so that the sprinkler does not go off when it rains.
Smart irrigation systems
Designing or upgrading your water irrigation system to be smart can make a big difference.
WaterSense is a third-party, independent certification program that helps identify water-conserving and water-efficient fixtures and installations.
If you do not need irrigation
If you do not need irrigation, you could install a drip system or soaker hoses.
Having a beautiful lawn and garden
There are eco-friendly and bird and human-friendly ways to make your lawn and garden grow without any chemicals. The cost of using chemicals is very steep for the earth, so it is always better to do without them, whenever possible.
Choose native plants that work in harmony with nature, thrive in your area of the country, require little water and maintenance, attract wildlife, and help control invasive species. Native plants do not need chemicals, fertilizer, or water, so they save you water, time, and money. With native plants, you do not have to spend a lot of time working in the garden.
My website Green Home Coach
Book: Living Green Effortlessly
Facebook Group: Love Your Everyday Green Home
Landscaping for Energy Efficiency and more
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