Save The Climate With Gardening!

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    How To Reduce Your Carbon Footprint With Gardening

    part 1

    Are you wondering how to reduce your carbon footprint? If you are not in denial about climate change you are probably wondering how to make a difference!?!

    A lot of suggestions on how you can reduce your carbon footprint seem life-changing. Even difficult to sustain depending on where you live. 

    For example, we live in a very rural area not having a car and trying to completely depend on public transport is not an option for us. We wouldn't get very far... 

    Life without a car here would seem rather difficult. Trying to offset our carbon footprint in our backyard is much more appealing and achievable as you will discover shortly. 

    How To Reduce Your Carbon Footprint With Gardening

    And the good news ... a win-win is possible for the climate and for you! With the correct gardening techniques, you will help the climate and reduce your carbon footprint. You will also produce healthy and nutritious food right in your backyard! A no-brainer...right?

    Climate-friendly gardening means to  garden smarter (not harder!)...and produce food for yourself and your family. All that while increasing biodiversity, reducing the amount of hard work (e.g. digging), increasing soil fertility and resilience to climate instability. What is not to love about this? can you reduce your carbon footprint with gardening?

    In general, climate-friendly gardening can reduce your carbon footprint in 2 ways: 

    1. Mitigation: this means you are reducing carbon loss and the emission of greenhouse gases
    2. Sequestration of Carbon: climate-friendly gardening attempts to capture carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and store it long-term in biomass or as soil organic matter.

    I know that this sounds a bit theoretical so let’s have a look at this in more detail and make it more understandable.

    Do You Want To Offset Your Carbon footprint And Make A Difference For The Climate?

    Download our FREE Gardening4Climate guide and learn how to do just that in your own backyard with permaculture gardening!

    What Is Carbon Sequestration And Why Is It Important For Climate-Friendly Gardening?

    How Plants Sequester Carbon

    To learn how to reduce your carbon footprint with gardening you have to understand how plants can pull CO2 out of the atmosphere. Nature has perfected this life-enabling process millions of years ago: it is called Photosynthesis! 

    Plants can take carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and convert it into sugars (that contain carbon) and oxygen. The sugars are converted into plant fibers e.g. wood or leaves. Plant materials like leaves or wood can be transformed into stable organic matter by soil microbes and the carbon is now sequestered i.e. taken out of the atmosphere for a longer period. Now you….or the plant has reduced the greenhouse gas CO2! You get the idea….the secret sauce is biomass and soil organic matter.

    These sugars are also excreted through the roots (root exudates) to attract beneficial microorganisms (which increase in numbers because the plant 'feeds' them) and are exchanged with fungi for other nutrients (mycorrhizae). More biomass...and organic matter :)

    !!!!!!!!!!So what is climate-friendly gardening you might ask? In a nutshell… increasing biomass and sequestering as much carbon (organic matter) as possible in your garden soil..and keeping it there! We will explore gardening techniques that will do just that here!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

    How To reduce Your Carbon Footprint in Your Backyard

    Climate-Friendly Gardening


    • Homegrown food has zero food miles: no emissions have been produced through transport
    • You take control of how your food is produced: no-dig gardening can sequester carbon in your soil instead of conventional farming methods that rely heavily on fossil fuels, chemical fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides. Conventionally produced food creates more emissions during production and releases carbon stored in the soil through plowing (oxidation).
    • Not using petrochemicals e.g. artificial fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides reduces emissions and toxicities in food and groundwater. Remember also that these chemicals have to be produced, transported and spread on the crops. Every step needs fossil fuel!
    • No secondary emission produced by logistics, refrigeration, warehouses, pumping water, running tractors, etc
    • No energy wasted on packaging. Most produce you buy in a supermarket is wrapped with some sort of plastic creating causing more environmental problems. This is energy-intensive and creates a global waste problem.
    • Most conventional crops are farmed in a way that releases stored carbon from the soil through plowing and the application of chemical fertilizers. Organic matter (C) in the soil gets oxidized and released back into the atmosphere as CO2. In the process soils are damaged, lost and destroyed. These damaged soils can't support healthy plants or hold water like healthy soil which acts as a sponge for water and nutrients.

    PART 2

    Check out Climate-Friendly Gardening Part 2 here and learn about 10 ways to reduce your carbon footprint with permaculture methods.

    What would you like to see next?

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