How can I garden more naturally?

Jean Vernon suggests a few ways to garden more gently, lessening your impact on the planet and its precious resources

You can’t hide from the news and if you stop to watch it, it’s pretty scary. We have all played a part in where our planet is today, and even though gardeners more than most are tuned in to nature, we can still soften our footprint as we pursue our favourite hobby. You don’t have to go organic to garden more in tune with nature and the environment. There are lots of ways to consider the environment and make a difference. If we all made one or two changes, just imagine the effect that would have. By choosing gardening products that are natural or based on natural ingredients your actions are kinder to the environment and safer for those that visit or use your garden; pets, children and wildlife.

Save rainwater

How many hosepipe bans have we endured? And yet thousands of gallons of rainwater fall onto the roofs of our homes each year. If you only do one thing this year, install a water butt. Rainwater is better for our plants anyway, so using it instead of tap water wins on every aspect. Using water responsibly is one huge difference that gardeners can make. Watering by hand i.e. with a watering can makes you realise how much water you are using and often directs it to where it is needed the most. Remember that established lawns rarely die in a drought and don’t need additional water in hot weather. Save the water for where it is needed.

Feed the soil

You already know about feeding your plants. And of course you can use natural fertilisers to do that too, such as Flower Power Natural Fertiliser, which contains long lasting natural ingredients for healthy plant growth.

Flower Power Natural Fertiliser contains super-concentrated natural poultry manure enriched with natural plant foods.
Image: Richard Jackson Garden

But did you know that by feeding the soil around your plants is also beneficial? You can do this by adding soil conditioner to your soil as a top dressing or by mixing Root Booster into the planting hole when you plant. Root Booster contains three natural ingredients that will enhance and improve your soil.

Give your plants a boost naturally as you plant with Root Booster.
Image: Richard Jackson’s Garden

Humates boost root growth and help fertilisers work more effectively. Seaweed extract which is a natural bio stimulant that conservers moisture and a natural fertiliser to gently boost plant growth in the first few weeks of growth. It also contains mychorhizal fungi that form a close relationship with the plant roots making water and nutrients more readily available.

Safer slug and snail control

If you knew that an organic, safer control for slugs and snails was available you would choose it over and above some of the other poisons available. Well it is and you can. Richard Jackson Slug & Snail Control is an effective tool for killing slugs and snails. And it’s approved for organic gardening. It’s based on naturally occurring iron phosphate and is completely Metahaldehyde free.

Richard sprinkling Slug & Snail Control pellets around potted plant
Slug & Snail Control is Metahaldehyde free and approved for organic gardening. Image: Richard Jackson Garden

The slugs and snails eat the pellets and then go underground to die. So you aren’t left with a slimy mess and the pellets are just as effective as the old toxic slug pellets. So if you need to protect young seedlings or emerging plants, it’s a safer choice and it works.

Natural ingredients

Look for products that contain natural ingredients. Just because something is natural doesn’t mean it won’t be effective. Take a look at Richard Jackson Double Action Weedkiller. It’s organic approved and contains an extract taken from common garden plants. But it will kill the leaves and roots of many persistent perennial weeds and quickly too. It’s biodegradable and safer to use around pets and children than many of the toxic chemicals on offer.

This effective natural weedkiller is based on an extract from a common garden plant. Available as a Ready to Use or Concentrate. Image: Richard Jackson Garden

Kinder pest control

Many of the ‘pests’ in our gardens are a meal for something else, so please only use controls to deal with sudden spikes that are actually causing problems. Ideally you need to allow the natural balance to restore in your garden so that natural predators keep problems at bay. Of course that doesn’t always happen and that’s when you might need a helping hand. Richard’s Pest Control Concentrate is an organic control, so it’s the kinder choice for the environment, but that doesn’t mean it’s kind to garden problems. So use with care, after dusk when beneficial creatures aren’t on the wing.

And if you are battling with Box Moth Caterpillar Richard’s Box Plant Health Cleanse & Shine deters the adults from laying eggs on your plants, and we had it checked out by a respected Professor of entomology who was happy that it didn’t impact on the biodiversity in his wildlife garden. You can read all about it here.

Lush lawns

You might think that lawn moss is one of the most difficult things to deal with. But it’s really not if you use Richard Jackson Moss Remover. It’s a plant-based lawn fertiliser containing naturally occurring bacteria that actually removes the moss naturally while gently feeding the lawn. The slow release nutrients keep feeding the lawn for up to three months, enriching the root zone with organic matter and improving the soil. It helps control and remove the moss without the need for toxic chemicals and you don’t even have to rake it out, so it saves your back too! It’s another natural gardening remedy that you can trust from Richard Jackson. It’s a professional, organic formula that makes the grass greener and ‘eats’ the moss and thatch over 2-3 weeks, so that it disappears and allows the grass to grow unhindered.

Moss Remover 5kg
Richard Jackson Moss Remover gently feeds the lawn while removing unsightly moss, with no raking required.

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