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Different Levels of Green Gardening by Shannon L. Buck

(This article was originally published on Y! Contributor Network on August 29th, 2009. Green gardening can be very frugal. I thought the gardeners reading the blog might enjoy this article.)

Different Levels of Green Gardening

Where are you in your green gardening efforts?

There are different levels of being green in all aspects of our lives. We are all at different stages in greening our homes, lifestyles, gardens and more. This is certainly true for me. I do not garden in a one-hundred percent green manner, but I am working on it. If you are like me, and are unable to afford to go hog wild with greening your gardening techniques, then I am here to offer some tips for your consideration.

The Dirt-Poor Way to a Greener Garden

This is how I started out. I had no real money to start with, so I did the best I could. I wanted to purchase organic produce rather than chemically infested produce, but was unable to. I decided that gardening was the best way to go.

  • I reused the seed starter trays from nurseries.
  • I found planters at yard sales, and were given many more.
  • I purchased cheap vegetable, fruit and herb seeds at the store.
  • I transplanted chives from my apartment garden to my new home.
  • While cleaning up the yard my first year here, I transplanted plants from my available space to garden plots.
  • I scavenged wood and nails to build garden beds.

The Not Quite Dirt-Poor Way to a Greener Garden

Now that I have been gardening for a few years, I have done more for my garden to make it greener. These things have been done in steps.

  • I decided to build a compost bin from five big, wooden pallets that I received for free. The fours sides are attached to each other, but the other pallet is just placed over the top so animals cannot get into the bin.
  • I purchased bags of good soil and organic compost to start the composting process, adding dead leaves, organic food scraps, grass clippings and other items as they were available.
  • I reuse all of the planters that I own, as well as the seed starters. These are mostly plastic at this time. As I purchase planters, I am choosing non-plastic alternatives.
  • I use the water from cooking vegetables, hard boiled eggs and pastas in my gardens.
  • I collect rainwater for garden use.
  • I purchase seedlings, started organically, from a nursery. I start seedlings myself when the nursery does not have what I want.

Future Plans for My Greener Garden

The future looks good on the gardening front. I am planning on doing some great things that will further green my gardening habits, as I learn to become more self-sufficient. Here are the plans that I have at this point.

  • I want to begin purchasing organic and/or open pollinated seeds.
  • Constructing a small greenhouse would be very beneficial.
  • I would like to learn more about vermiculture.
  • I want to design an extensive herb garden.
  • I want to design an extensive salad garden.
  • The purchase of a wheelbarrow would be very helpful.
  • I want to have two more compost bins.

There you have it. Greener ways to garden from a woman who is trying to incorporate a green lifestyle into her life on a budget.

What, you may ask, will I do with all of the plastic planters once I have replaced them with non-plastic counterparts? I will be giving them away to anyone who may want them. In this way, I will not be adding to the landfill problem.

You May Also Enjoy:

Starting Seeds for a Child’s Herb Garden

Planting a Child’s Herb Garden


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