Sustainable Landscaping Ideas

Sustainable landscaping isn’t just a buzzword, it’s a way of incorporating sustainable practices and designs into your landscape. So, what does this mean? You may already assume that by having a backyard with all the trees, grass, and dirt you’re already achieving something fairly sustainable right?

Well, with some modern landscape designs, extra fertilizers, water or pesticides can be needed to keep everything looking great. There may also be the requirement for extra materials which aren’t very sustainable. Unfortunately, all these extras can damage your wallet and the environment. So this is where sustainable landscaping comes in. By letting mother nature do all the hard work, you’ll be able to sit back and enjoy your great outdoors!

Here are a few ideas to consider if you’re looking to have a sustainable landscape.


1. Dealing with the rain

In general, rain is good for the yard. It provides all the plants and grass with the needed water for growth. However, too much rain can hamper this growth by leaching nutrients from the soil. Another big issue with too much rain is the pooling of water and flooding. Thankfully, there are a few ways to deal with this rain sustainably. 

Rain garden

Rain gardens are useful solutions in the landscape – they filter and slow down rainwater pouring off roofs, across lawns, and paving. Rain gardens capture the water temporarily in a basin where it percolates into the ground, recharging depleted groundwater. It also traps residues like fertilizers so that they do not pollute our lakes and streams. But most of all through thoughtful design and plant selection – they are beautiful! 

Rain harvesting tanks and systems

Rain collection tanks are great for capturing water from rooftops and storing it for use either for a water feature or irrigation. An example most people are familiar with is a rain barrel capturing water from a single downspout for use watering a garden. If you want to go a step further, you have the option of using a harvesting system to capture rainwater from multiple downspouts storing it underground for use in small or dramatic water features. It can also be linked to a small pump to provide supplemental irrigation throughout the landscape, creating a sustainable supply of water for landscape beds.

sustainable landscaping


2. Permeable paving

Permeable paving functions in a similar way to a rain garden as it allows water to infiltrate through the gaps into the ground. Some systems have the ability to take in rainfall up to 11

inches per hour without shedding on the surface. In commercial applications, permeable paving has the ability to replace unsightly detention basins as well as decrease sewers and catch basins for storm runoff. This allows more space for development, while at the same time trapping and filtering pollutants dripping off cars so that it does not wash off into our lakes and streams.

sustainable landscaping


3. Choosing the right plants

Choosing plants that make a stunning visual impact is only part of the equation when it comes to sustainable landscaping. It’s good to also consider what naturally grows in your area or environment without the need for additional resources. Plants that are perhaps more exotic or don’t deal well in your area may need extra watering, pesticides, or fertilizers. 

Lush and beautiful flowers and trees in front of a house as the Garden Trends For 2022 cover image


4. Hardscaping with eco-friendly or local materials

Part of sustainability is using high-quality local suppliers for products for your landscape. Local means less shipping-related costs to you and our environment. Aside from this, you’ll want to look for materials that are either built to last or if they do break down, they won’t negatively affect the soil or environment.

Person places new grass outdoors


5. LED lighting

LED lighting provides ambient lighting at a 75 percent reduction in energy use as compared to conventional low voltage, halogen bulbs but with far longer lasting bulbs and fixtures. The longevity of the bulbs removes the “hassle factor” that people had finding replacement bulbs that were constantly burning out. LED landscape lighting is the ultimate sustainable solution – attractive, cost-effective with little or no maintenance all while utilizing little energy!

Large house with garden by the lake


These are just some of the ways you can make your landscape more sustainable, but there are always new concepts being developed! If you’re looking at getting any of these solutions installed in your landscape, why not get in touch with Landcrafters Landscaping? We’d be happy to turn your environmentally friendly vision into reality!