Hutt at Heart
plants sprouting

Eco Design Tips: Walk in the garden

Take a walk in the garden for the start of spring.

As we reach the end of winter it is sometimes surprising just how much things like shrubs and trees have grown in the shorter days, rain and general greyness that comes with winter.

Do your trees or hedging and plants need a trim? They will if they shade the house or windows in winter-time. It is good to have enough space for a breeze to pass between the house and large shrubs or banks. If pruning trees consider having a specialist do it, it does make a difference.

Here’s some more tips for some spring maintenance:

  • Clean shaded paths and mossy areas.
  • Check that gutters and drains aren’t blocked.
  • Wash your house and clean the windows to let more of that spring sunlight and warmth in.
  • Also check and see if there has been flooding in the garden or under the house, as either of these will usually indicate poor drainage.

If you’re looking to get stuck into your gardening, you’re not alone. Labour weekend is the biggest weekend of the year for garden centres.

If considering landscape plantings, consider plants specific to the local area and which might supply habitat to insects and food to birds. Many of these are also quite modest in how much water they need to grow. If a proportion of your plantings are drought-hardy then you shouldn’t need too much watering.

Think of adding fruit tree or two. Pick a fruit you like, but also consider suitability for the local climate and soil type, and finally size when grown. Trees don’t just look nice, they also help to remove carbon from the atmosphere.

Avoid buying plants that are hard to contain or control. The size indicated on the label in garden centres are the expected size after six to eight years. Plants will often grow to be larger than this so consider space before purchase and planting. Herbs are a great option if space is an issue, they’ll also save you money at the supermarket. Plant herbs near the kitchen door for easy access if you can.

Hutt City Council offers a free home assessment service by our in-house Eco Design Advisor.

For a full house assessment and advice,

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Subscribe to Hutt at Heart – Te Manawa, your monthly email newsletter where you can find out about fantastic things going on across our city and at Hutt City Council.