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Keeping on trend during 2017. Six ways to help the environment in which we live.

Six reasons why we should all do our bit for the environment

It’s no longer a new idea to each do our own bit for the environment. There are few people who don’t recognise the importance of safeguarding all the wonderful things that exist on the planet Earth. Climate change might not be a trendy term but it does encompass a lot of the thoughts behind energy-saving, water preservation, wildlife protection and flood prevention, not to mention recycling, tree-protection and limiting greenhouse gas emissions. There will always be sceptics but most people can recognise common sense when it is on display.

What can you do as a householder to show how much you care for the environment?

environment, trees, gardens, gardening, trends 2017, plants, greenhouse, gases, clean Caring for the environment is a responsible way to behave.

Firstly, don’t fall into the predictable trap of assuming you don’t count. Here’s a six simple steps that would make a huge difference, provided everyone joined in:

1: Power to the people

  • Turn off household appliances at night. Including the computer and TV. If the whole of the UK turned off their computer at night it would be equivalent to removing around 245,000 cars from the road. Electrical equipment uses about 75 per cent of its power at night when most people are fast asleep.
saving, electricity, environment, computer, equipment, energy, switch off. turn off No, no, DO TURN OFF YOUR PC. And your television, lights and equipment!

2:  Waste not, want not

  • Eat your leftovers in the fridge! The methane produced in landfill sites is thirty times worse than carbondioxide in the environment. We throw away around 7 million tonnes of perfectly good food and drink every year. Each family could prevent a significant amount of methane whilst saving almost £500 per year by buying what they need rather than having a surplus.
waste, food, money, environment, climate change, fridge, saving, energy, methane, gas Don't waste food! It translates into savings of energy and money.

3: Trees are jolly good fellows

  • Plant more trees! Every garden has room for at least one. You can have a tree in a patio pot, on a balcony and definitely in a small garden or courtyard. Why bother? Because trees are one of nature’s most amazing air cleaners and soil stabilisers. They soak up toxins, soak up water, produce oxygen, provide biodiversity and even give a crop of timber when you need to prune them. Many people believe that flooding and deserts could be avoided by planting more trees (and not felling rainforests). There are more than 21 million homes in the UK. Just imagine the enrichment for the environment if each planted a tree.
tree, trees, environment, healthy, greenhouse gas, green, flooding, climate change Trees are not only beautiful but they are good for the environment too. Plant a tree!

4: Flicking the switch

  • Switch electricity and gas suppliers to a renewable energy company and reduce your carbon footprint. Even if the company supplies a combination of renewable and mainstream, it’s a contribution that is worth making. Some renewable energy suppliers can even offer you a saving – it could cost you less, not more.
renewable energy, wind turbine, switch, energy, provider, saving, environment, green, power What's not to like about renewable energy? It's clean, it's green and it can be cheaper than from mainstream sources.

5: A load of rubbish

  • Re-use as many things as possible. Don’t buy throwaway goods such as paper plates and plastic cups or cutlery. Avoid buying things with excess packaging. Get into the habit of giving things away rather than throwing away. There are many recycling sites that will advertise them free of charge. Why bother? We’re back to the landfill site problem and the increasing amount of gases they produce in the environment.
plastic, waste, environment, cups, plates, gases, greenhouse gas, carbon footprint, methane, recycling Don't buy throw-away cups, plates and packaging. It's far better for the environment to wash up a few bits of crockery.

6: A light bulb moment

  • When your lightbulbs wear out, replace them with energy-efficient bulbs, particularly LEDs. Over time this should save you money, even though the initial cost might be higher.
Energy, energy saving, lightbulb, led, leds, renewable, environment Have a lightbulb moment and replace your old ones with LEDs. Save energy.

What gardening habits are we following in 2017?

form, shape, garden, design trends, design, gardening Rocks, timber, curvaceous shapes are all popular
  • Outdoor ‘rooms’ are on the increase, with a much wider range of weatherproof seating which is designed to stand out all year.
Furniture, garden, rattan, seating, gardening, trends 2017, popular Rattan furniture is really popular. It takes an indoor look and sets it outdoors.
  • More people are using blocks of colour for contrast in their hard landscaping, such as a single area of rendered walling in a striking colour.
contemporary, trends, garden design, garden, flowers, perennials, walls, rendered, block, colour coordinated Team your rendered block wall colour with your planting for a truly inspirational, contemporary look.
  • Awareness about the environment is more ‘mainstream’, with many people incorporating some sort of ‘green’ facility outdoors. Many have compost bins; insect habitats; bee-friendly planting; bird feeding  and nesting facilities and wildlife ponds.
bird box, environment, friendly, eco, birds, nesting, habitats, garden, gardening, trends, wildlife Bird boxes, feeding stations and wildlife habitats are all the domain of the environmentally-friendly gardener.
Bosco Verticale, Milan, green, growing, plants, city, vertical growing, forest, trees, eco, environment Bosco Verticale in Italy represents the ultimate design for a vertical forest to help green up Milan
  • More people accept that the removal of trees can have a huge impact on climate – and many choose to plant a tree, even in a small space.
tree, garden, small garden, tree planting, environment, gardening, plants, environment There's room in a small garden for a tree or two.

Further trends

  • People are generally more aware of planting to suit their plot and climate, including choosing drought-tolerant plants or those that can withstand flooding.
planting, drought tolerant, flooding, gardening, garden, environment Drought tolerant planting is all the rage in 2017.
  • Vegetable growing is becoming increasingly popular. Grow your own is ‘in’! It’s trendy to be a vegetarian or vegan.
Vegetables, growing, gardens, trends, vegan, vegetarian, grow your own, 2017 will see more vegetarians and vegans - and proud of it!
community gardening, people, towns, villages, gardens, working, therapy Community gardening and community orchards are now recognised as being great places where people of all ages and abilities can derive great benefits.
  • Urban green space; community parks and orchards; even private new-builds are now an important aspect of planning control and building regulations. The outdoor landscape has become an essential element rather than an add-on.
public space, park, bench, people, community, garden, gardening Public parks and even a simple public space is really important in the 21st century.
House plants, houseplants, toxins, purify, healthy, air filtering, environment, green House plants are good for you! They filter the air and remove toxins. Bring them into the home and office for maximum benefits.

Want to view further gardening trends for 2017? Click HERE to see 25 more.