Greenscaping For All Seasons

By Lina Younes

The leaves in the Washington, DC area will soon reach the full range of the fall spectrum. Since we have been having unseasonably warm weather, we still can see many flowering bushes in bloom in gardens and parks in the area surrounded by the multicolor autumn foliage. In fact, I’m actually looking forward for the temperatures to become steadily cooler so that I can plant bulbs that will blossom in the springtime. I guess I’ll have to be more patient.

As we’re talking about the changes in seasons, we should start to think about taking special steps to protect our gardens. With careful planning this autumn, we will be rewarded with colorful flowers and green lawns next year. We can achieve this goal without resorting to chemicals. We can go green in our yards through greenscaping!

How to greenscape?  Well it boils down to some basic resource conservation issues: reduce, reuse, and recycle. The green 3 R’s. By implementing these principles you can save millions of gallons of water, pesticides, while protecting the environment. First, reduce the production of waste in your gardens. Select native plants and perennials. Secondly, reuse products prolongs the useful life of these materials and delays their final disposal. Thirdly, recycle lawn trimmings and yard debris in a compost pile to be able to feed your lawn with minimal use of chemicals. Some work now will go a long way for a healthier environment.

What are your thoughts on the issue? Any tips? Planning anything special for your garden this year? We love to hear from you.

About the author: Lina Younes has been working for EPA since 2002 and chairs EPA’s Multilingual Communications Task Force. Prior to joining EPA, she was the Washington bureau chief for two Puerto Rican newspapers and she has worked for several government agencies.

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