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SUSTAINABLE GARDEN DESIGN MATERIALS
Hints and tips for creating more eco-friendly and sustainable garden designs by Alice Bowe*
Green, sustainable and eco-friendly garden design does not mean you have to compromise on good garden design. In fact careful, considered thought about materials and how they are used often lead to better design and better results.
Almost every landscape material you choose to use will have an environmental impact, but some are more eco-friendly than others.
If you want to know the full environmental impact of a hard surfacing material you’ll need to know every process from ‘birth’ to eventual disposal into account! Luckily, someone else has already done this hard work for us and you can read all about it in the BRE Green Guide to Housing Specification
Ask yourself three simple questions when assessing how sustainable your landscaping materials are:
SOME TIPS TO GET YOU STARTED
Use reclaimed materials where possible.
Look for permeable landscaping solutions
Try to balance the amount of impermeable landscaping in a garden with at least the same area of permeable landscaping to allow water to drain away naturally.
Check your timber is FSC or PEFC certified.
With a moment to stop and think about where the landscaping materials for your new garden come from, you'll soon discover the benefits of sustainable garden design solutions are not just the green ones!
*Alice Bowe is an award winning garden designer, writer and columnist for the Saturday Times.
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