Sustainability is one of the most important topics in garden design. You might be surprised to find out that the garden and outdoors industry is second only to fossil fuels in terms of its production of carbon dioxide. For those of us who have known this for a while, we’ve been doing our best to develop practices, source materials and design techniques that minimise our impact on the very environment that gives us our living. Here are 3 of the best ways you can do this within your own garden design project:
Asphalt driveways, concrete toppings and cut stone patios aren’t the only ways to get hard surfacing in your garden. Resin bound composites are an upcycled/recycled alternative that incorporate materials that would otherwise may have ended up in landfill. Sometimes they’re purely functional, like those that use recycled rubber which is great for areas where children play and may fall, some can be statement pieces, like recycled glass options which can add sparkle and shimmer. Whichever you go for, not only will you be adding to your sustainability credentials but you’ll also be getting a permeable surface for your garden; something which can be extremely expensive to source otherwise. And no, we can’t think of a catch strong enough to put us off.
No prizes on guessing where the name comes from here. Hemp is one of those incredibly versatile materials that also has a net positive effect on the environment, rather than just a reduced negative effect. Besides this, hemp is also an extremely resistant material which copes well with extreme temperatures, frost, sun and seasonal expansion.
This is one of the easiest opportunities to bring recycled materials into your garden. It’s another one with a net positive effect, as lots of timber somehow finds its way to landfill which is quite frankly ridiculous. A quick Google will show you hundreds of ways to use this material, including the slicing of stumps into natural paving stones, railway sleeper borders and repurposed rustic furniture. And of course don’t forget the hipster’s favourite: wooden pallets. These are becoming pricey as factories look to cash in on a product they previously had to pay to dispose of, but you can still find these being given away for free on Facebook and Gumtree so keep an eye out and build a collection up to give your garden an upcycled coffee table, or even a rustic alternative to traditional decking.
Eden Restored is a team of passionate garden designers working throughout London, Kent and Surrey.
We deliver value-for-money on projects of any size, from inner-city courtyards to countryside cottages.
To discuss your ideas and how we can help throughout the entire process, get in touch.