We Americans love our lawns! About 2% of all land area in the continental US is covered by lawn, and grass is, by far, our number one irrigated crop. Often, though, we focus on appearances. We want our lawns to be the envy of the neighborhood, and we water, fertilize, and pour on the pesticides in order to get that perfect green carpet. But all this comes at a high cost to the environment – not to mention our wallets. Is there a better way?

You bet there is. Sustainable landscaping.

Sustainable Landscaping: Growing a Greener Future

When it comes to our environmental footprint, we typically think of our vehicles, our home or business energy usage, our reliance on disposable, single-use products, and even the bags in which we carry our groceries. But we rarely think of our yards. After all, what’s more natural than soil, grass, plants, and maybe a bird feeder or two?

Well…. Oftentimes, landscaping focuses on looking good. Understandable! We all want to enjoy our lawns. But design doesn’t always take the local climate and the environment at large into account. It takes extra water, extra gas, extra chemical products, extra time, and extra money to create and support a “perfect” emerald green yard.

Sustainable landscaping means different things to different people, but boiled down, it is achieving a beautiful yard while letting nature do most of the work. Nature doesn’t mind doing the heavy lifting! In fact, when you work with your local conditions, you:

  • Create a landscape that is already adapted to your area’s temperature, weather, and rainfall patterns. You will not have to use extra water, chemicals, labor, or money to propagate healthy grass and plants.
  • Rely on natural pest control measures. Native plants and trees have built-in defenses against pests in your area. You can ditch the chemicals, and if necessary, use non-toxic remedies. Did you know, for example, that beer can help with the slugs that love to feed on the tender leaves of your flowers and produce?
  • Can take things a little easier. If you’re like us, you love spending time beautifying your property. But if you can save some time and effort and still enjoy a great landscape… we say all the better. Plus, there’s always something to do. You can plant a garden, grow herbs and veggies in containers, or use that soft lawn to play a game of baseball or tag with family and neighbors or even increase curb appeal.
  • Reduce environmental impact – and let nature work its magic. Conventional lawn care and landscaping has a major environmental impact. Gas-powered lawn mowers are a big culprit: the average machine is only 20% efficient. Not only are they terribly inefficient, refueling these mowers results in 17 million gallons of spilled fuel each year.

Further, they utilize basic designs and do not include emissions-control mechanisms. In fact, running a commercial zero turn mower for one hour produces as much emissions as 88 cars traveling one hour at 55mph. Residential mowers are no better, producing the equivalent of 11 cars traveling for one hour.

Gas mowers are filthy, inefficient, loud polluters. Leading electric solutions, such as those offered by Mean Green Mowers, solve these problems: zero gas, zero emissions, quiet operation, and power that is up for any job, residential or commercial.

Even better, research shows that lawns have the ability to capture more carbon than untouched ecosystems. When you eliminate pollution and toxicity from your landscaping routine, your lawn provides green benefits to your community.

  • Save money. A self-sustaining landscape doesn’t require extensive maintenance or expensive care. Because you are letting nature take the wheel, you can cut your budget by hundreds. If you own or run commercial properties, you can realize savings of thousands each season.

Wondering How to Get Started with Sustainable Landscaping?

You don’t have to do everything at once: take some steps this year, and keep working towards greater sustainability:

  • Use native plants. They require far less water, pesticides, and attention!
  • Aerate your lawn to allow nutrients to penetrate the soil.
  • Compost organic scraps (e.g. vegetable peelings, leaves, grass clippings) to feed your lawn naturally.
  • Set your mowing deck to 3.5 inches, or, if you have a lawn care service, request that they do so. Trimming the top ⅓ of the grass keeps the roots strong and healthy.
  • Replace chemical fertilizers and pesticides with natural, safe options. For example, compost and manure nourishes your lawn without adding toxic ingredients. Using dish soap and water can help with pests like aphids. With a little research, you can tackle the problems that your lawn faces without turning to chemicals.
  • Go electric. Electric mowers are environmentally responsible. And think of all the trips to the gas station you’ll skip! If you do not maintain your own yard or property, support landscaping companies that utilize sustainable equipment and techniques.

Landscaping Pros: Electric Is Good for Your Bottom Line

All of the benefits we’ve discussed are excellent selling points for landscaping companies. Consumers are increasingly interested in supporting companies with green practices and an approach that focuses on sustainability. If you are running a landscaping/mowing company, electric mowers and an environmentally friendly stance is a key competitive advantage.

How Can Mean Green Mowers Help You?

Sustainability really does start in our own backyards. If you want to learn how Mean Green Mowers can help you create greener lawns, greener businesses, and a greener future, get in touch today.