Sustainable Garden Making

Sustainable is surely the buzz word of the century, tacked onto anything and everything. But despite its overuse,  the concept of ‘sustainability’ is a still valuable yardstick by which we can measure many human endeavors, including gardening.

Let’s start off with a very simple definition of sustainability:

Sustainability is the capacity to endure over time.

And this concept may be applied at many levels: to a garden, a farm, a community, a corporation, or even an entire society..

Furthermore, for an endeavor to be sustainable it must satisfy social, environmental AND economic conditions.  WHY??

SOCIAL:  If your endeavor is not rewarding in some way,  you will stop doing it.

ENVIRONMENTAL: No endeavor can endure over the long-term if it destroys or degrades the wider environment in which it exists.

ECONOMIC:  An endeavor will fail if it is not economically viable.

When it comes to making sustainable gardens these criteria may seem a bit muddy! But stated briefly: for a garden to be sustainable and enduring, it must be both easy on the gardener and gentle on the earth.

In the following pages I will explore how to apply this view of sustainability to our day-to-day gardening activities, both inside and beyond the property boundary.


Easy on the gardener

If our gardens are to endure, … Continued

Forget-me-nots and tiraella grow in the shade

Gentle on the earth

Sustainability does not stop at the … Continued

Woodland plants for sale at Cady's Falls Nursery, Morrisville, Vermont