Skip to main content

The environmental benefits of gardening

People plant a garden for various reasons, including filling empty outdoor spaces, improving their home’s curb appeal, or having access to fresh herbs and vegetables. Whatever your reason, it’s important to note that you’re also benefiting the environment through starting a garden.

A garden, however small, has a significant impact on your surroundings. So, if you have available space for gardening, it’s really worthwhile to grow different plants, herbs, flowers, and even trees. Even if you don’t have any extra space, you can still use containers to grow flowers, herbs, and small trees.

So, wondering how gardens help the environment? Here are some of the benefits.

Cleans the air and ground

Plants clean the air through the process of photosynthesis, which is how they make their food. During the process, the leaves use carbon dioxide, water, and minerals to create organic compounds. Humans and animals exhale carbon dioxide, which is a waste. Leaves, on the other hand, use it to make food.

benefits of gardening

Plants release oxygen into the air during the process. They also remove bacteria and chemicals that float around in the air.

A plant’s roots also improve the health of the ground. While absorbing water, roots uptake different components, such as heavy metals and chemicals. This provides a conducive environment for small plants, and it also cleans the groundwater.

Creates an ecosystem for birds and insects

Waking up to the sounds of chirping birds can be quite enjoyable. Starting a garden for small trees is a great way of inviting birds to your home. You can even make or buy birdhouses and place them strategically around your home to create nesting spots for them.

Green environments also attract beneficial insects, such as mantis, soldier beetles, ladybird beetle, and tachinid flies. Such insects help control the infestation of certain pests or bugs. For instance, if you have white grubs in your lawn, beneficial insects can kill them.

Bear in mind that birds also feed on different pests that invade your garden and lawn. Additionally, both insects and birds are pollinators, meaning they help in the fertilization processes of different plants.

Prevents soil erosion

Starting a garden also helps to ensure the structural integrity of your soil. Ideally, the roots of plants hold soil together, preventing it from being washed away by rainwater.

Keep in mind that topsoil is most likely to be washed away by water movement because it is loose. As you already know, topsoil contains the most nutrients due to leaf litter and organic debris that break down on the surface. Losing such soil to erosion can affect the growth of your grass or plants.

Reduces carbon footprints

Gardens also allow you to grow your own food. This means you can avoid getting most of your herbs, vegetables, and fruits from the local grocery stores.

benefits of gardening
Juice Flair/Shutterstock

Commercial farming usually has a considerable impact on the environment through the farm chemicals and equipment used. Also, the produce at the grocery stores usually comes from far away, meaning this transportation process affects the environment. Extended periods of transportation also impact the quality of the products you buy.

Having your own garden allows you to play a role in protecting the environment as well as guaranteeing you fresh produce every time.

Cuts down your cooling costs

Incorporating gardens in your landscaping design can make your home more energy efficient. Well-positioned trees around your home can help save up to 25 percent of your heating and cooling costs.

You can grow trees that shade your home’s roof to ensure optimal cooling during hot weather. This, in turn, prevents your air conditioner from running continuously to cool your home. Consequently, you play a role in reducing energy demand.

When planted in the correct area, trees can also help keep down your winter heating costs. Strong trees can protect your house from cold northwest winter winds to avoid those freezing temperatures.

Final thoughts

When appropriately maintained, gardens are aesthetically pleasing, and they offer a great place to unwind when you get home. They provide a home to songbirds, butterflies, and other wildlife. Most importantly, they play a crucial role in protecting the environment.

When you’re ready to set up your garden, strive to grow native plants and trees. These plants tend to withstand the climatic conditions of your location well. They also don’t need regular maintenance because they’re already established in the area.

You should choose plants that grow well with other plants to encourage bio-diversity, and always strive to maintain the garden regularly.

Editors' Recommendations

HappySprout Contributor
Why are your cucumber leaves wilting? How to save this salad staple
How to treat wilted cucumber leaves
Person transplanting a cucumber seedling into a garden

If you want a garden-fresh salad with your own cucumbers or some delicious homemade pickles, then you’ll need to add cucumbers to your vegetable garden. Cucumber plants are a pretty simple vegetable to grow, but they can be a touch finicky sometimes. Aside from their pollination issues and cucumber beetles, the most common problem is cucumber leaves wilting. There are several reasons your cucumber leaves may be wilting, some of which you can treat. To determine why your cucumber leaves are wilting and what you should do about it, keep reading.

Bacterial wilt
Bacterial wilt is caused by Erwinia tracheiphila, a bacteria found in cucumber beetles. These beetles feed on cucumber plants, and when they do, it creates small wounds that would otherwise be harmless. However, when the beetle’s dung comes into contact with these wounds, the bacteria passes into the plant. Once the plant is infected, cucumber beetles feeding on it pick up more bacteria that can then transfer to more cucumber plants.

Read more
Does basil repel mosquitoes? We tested it to find out
Can basil keep bugs from biting? Here's what we know
Basil potted plant

When you're outside enjoying your garden or hiking through the woods, mosquitoes are an itchy annoyance. They can spread disease and cause discomfort, so it's no wonder people turn to insect repellents. There are many commercial repellants available, but these often contain chemicals that have negative impacts on the environment.

Eco-conscious consumers are constantly on the lookout for natural plant-based alternatives. Can plant-based bug repellent products provide adequate protection while reducing the concern over chemical contact? You may already have one solution growing in your herb garden - basil. Here's what you need to know about basil mosquito repellent.

Read more
Turn your hydrangea leaves from brown to green – make your plants healthy again
Get rid of brown spots and restore your hydrangea's health
Purple and blue hydrangeas

Hydrangeas are beautiful flowers that can be found in many gardens, container gardens, and even as cut flowers. They come in several shades of pink, blue, and white, and some of them can even change color. As beautiful as these flowers are, though, they're not without fault. Proper hydrangea care can keep most of their common problems at bay, but they might still develop brown spots on their leaves.

Brown spots on hydrangea leaves can be caused by several different things, although the most common causes are fungal infections. Keep reading to figure out what is causing your hydrangea leaves to turn spotty and to find out how to treat it.

Read more