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Top Tips For Sustainable Gardening - Plant A Tree
You may have noticed we have a passion for gardening!
We love being outside, in nature and growing things we can eat or find beauty in. We have come to find that there are a lot of practices however that are not sustainable or eco-friendly - even in gardening.
We decided to create a series of blog posts with our top tips for sustainable gardening and how to remain eco-friendly in your garden. In this weeks blog, we discuss the impact of planting trees.
Plant A Tree
This may seem an obvious one, but if everyone in Ireland planted one tree, big or small, in our communities, schools or our own gardens, the carbon stored would be the equivalent to driving around the world....twice!
We committed to planting 200 trees with Bugs, Bees & Native Trees and we are thrilled to say we smashed that target in our first year. We continue to plant trees of various types for every order placed and are very proud of this commitment.
Many schools, local community centre's, hospices and older person's centre's are very receptive to groups or individuals looking to plant trees in their grounds. Is this something your local community group, book group, neighbours or friends would consider doing?
It is obviously important to ask permission if you would like to plant in an area that does not belong to you. We have however been following the antics of various 'guerilla gardeners' and 'phantom planters' and love what they have been getting up to!
We love trees of all types, but there is something very special about planting a native tree. Some trees have a very strong history, with stories, songs and traditions built around them. Some of Ireland's native trees have been almost lost - isn't it wonderful to think that we can play a small part in sustaining them?
Of the 213 trees we have planted in the past year, many have been native trees, including:
Birch, Blackthorn, Bird Cherry, Crab Apple, Dog Rose, Elder (our recipe for Elder Flower Wine here), Guelder Rose, Hawthorn, Hazel, Oak & Willow. You can see more native Irish trees here .
Not only are native trees suitable for our changeable and sometimes challenging climate, they are also beautiful. Most of the trees listed above are flowering and therefore support pollinators and some even produce fruits. There is something so very satisfying in planting a tree that 'belongs'. That being said - we can't resist the beautiful non-native trees and love to create a mix of both.
One of our projects was to create a willow dome. These are a fairly common sight in a lot of playgrounds, and give children a wonderful place to hide and explore made from entirely natural elements.
The wonderful thing about Willow, is that you only need a few whips to get started. Willow grows incredibly easily from cuttings literally just stuck into the ground. We took some cuttings of long, freshly cut whips, then cut them down even smaller, put them in the ground in a circle (leaving an area for a door) and within a few weeks - they started to grow. Obviously it will take a while for the dome to be completely enclosed, but it was a simple and fun project to do with the children.
We followed this simple guide, but there are many variations on how to create a Willow dome. Don't get bogged down in the 'way' to do it - just do it! It was such fun and as the willow grows, it can be woven into fancy patterns - or just tied in at the top. We are going to grow some clematis up it too, just to pretty it up and create some flowers.
If you do one thing this year for the planet and our environment, why not plant a tree?
Could you plant a tree in your garden, school or community? Could you pledge to plant a number of trees with Bugs, Bees & Native Trees?
They say that gardening and planting is the ultimate belief in the future. Let us plant for the future and our planet!
Do you have any top tips for sustainable gardening? We would love to hear them and give them a go.
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As always, hoping you, your family & friends are safe and happy,
Keelly & Arianne xx