As we learn more about the consequences of single-use plastic, it’s becoming easier for us to reduce, reuse, and recycle the plastic we use in our gardens.
Here are a few tips to get you started:
· Start your own seeds from paper packets. Use biodegradable seed cups or make your own from toilet paper tubes, egg cartons, or newspaper. If you must use plastic containers, return them to the gardening center afterward, so they can be reused.
· Order topsoil, compost, manure, and mulch in bulk from a local supplier that will deliver.
· When setting up a raised garden bed, instead of spreading black plastic on the bottom to smother weeds, use cardboard or layers of newspaper.
· Avoid plastic-coated trellises for plants like tomatoes, peas, and beans. Buy uncoated metal cages or use wooden stakes.
· Buy plastic-free garden tools. Look for wooden handles and metal ends. Keep your tools in good condition by cleaning them regularly and don’t leave them outside where they’ll develop rust.
· Buy cotton gardening gloves.
· Make your own plant markers from popsicle sticks, wooden or old wooden kitchen spoons.
· Start your own seed bank by storing seeds for later planting in glass jars.
· Make your own weed killer. Here’s a recipe I use:
1 ½ cups epsom salt
2 tablespoons dishwashing liquid
When you’re gardening this summer, always look for the plastic free options. Mother Nature will thank you.