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.