How to Design Green Landscaping:
Ideas, Options, and Inspiration
Alrighty, we've delved into why organic gardening matters; how to design green landscaping by looking at the variety of options available to you is the obvious first step toward an eco-yard or garden.
There are a few basics behind any landscaping that I think it overlooked in general, but is very important with eco-friendly landscaping.
- What purpose does it serve?
- Does it fit the natural surrounding landscape?
- Can it be easily sustained?
- Does it benefit or harm the surrounding environment?
It's important to ask these questions so that your designs and plans are not only going to be eco-friendly, but this will ensure less need for pest control, less work for you, and you'll be leaving the area better tan you found it.
Of course, it makes for some har choices. When we lived in Las Vegas, we had the choice to design green landscaping in two ways: 1) desert landscaping that required little inputs (water, amendments, work), fit the surrounding environment, and could easily be sustained, or 2) we could grow an organic vegetable garden, requiring heavy amendments to the soil, lots of water and work, and little sustainability with the hopes that growing our own food would offset the footprint. We chose the latter in that instance, but that doesn't mean it's always the right choice. You get to weigh these landscaping ideas below for yourself and decide which you think is the best fit for your needs and your values.
These articles are all here to serve as introductions to the many green landscaping options available to you. Its not just grass, flowers, or vegetables that you will want to consider, but how and what and where you plant them. There's a lot that goes into learning how to design green landscaping, so at the end of these articles you'll find books and inspiration to help you delve further.
Introduction to Permaculture
Permaculture is by far my favorite theory and practice of a sustainable lifestyle, integrating a holistic and integrated view into our homes, gardens, and ways of living. It not only covers landscaping or food production, but also includes principles that can be applied to community planning, family living, and more. Let's start with the basics of permaculture gardening, though.
Natural Lawn Care
Grass has its purposes, but growing it sustainably can be difficult. Natural lawn care should consider climate, size, seasonal changes, and water conservation. It's not the right option for everyone. Check out the article below to see if it's right for you and how to do it well.
Read More: Natural & Organic Lawn Care
Creating Bird Habitat
Natural habitat and sources of food and water are diminishing with urban sprawl. Supporting our bird wildlife not only helps our feathered friends, but it can also be a benefit to our gardens if properly cared for.
Read More: Creating a Backyard Bird Habitat
It's a big task to turn your front or backyard into an edible landscape (trust me, I know!), but I do believe integrating some portion of our yards into edible plants is important for a sustainable future. This is actually a full (albeit not very) section dedicated just to creating edible landscaping: vegetable gardens, fruit trees, annuals and perennials, all serving the purpose of serving up dinner.
Read More: Growing an Organic Vegetable Garden
Many more articles on their way...
This growing section has big expansion plans. Some of the upcoming articles on how to design green landscaping include:
- Edible Landscaping
- Natural Landscaping
- Forest Gardening
- Accessible Gardening and Landscaping
- Biodynamic/Biointensive Landscaping
- Container or Raised Bed Landscaping
Which would you like to see first? Let me know in the comments below!