Greener air starts in our gardens

How can we help reduce air pollution?

Air pollution levels are at an all-time high, with cities and built-up areas particularly problematic. Shockingly, London had filled its yearly quota for legal levels of air pollution in 2018…in less than a single month, according to an article from the Guardian. The same outlet reported that the toxicity of our air claims the lives of around 40,000 people every year.

This isn’t great news if you live in a city, so you probably want to know what you can do about the problem. Fear not, because compost bag provider Compost Direct is here to lend an expert green thumb. In this article, we explore the ways you can bring fresher, cleaner air to your area and your city.

Conifers — a barrier against toxins

Conifers are a prime pick for dealing with air pollution, with Homes & Property citing the hedge as a great way to clean the garden air. Specifically, the western red cedar hedge is named as an idea conifer to plant in your garden. But if your garden is a little smaller, the publication also names the yew as a great alternative, citing its evergreen nature and easy trimming.

Gerbera daisies — battling air toxins

Bring greener air to your garden with multi-coloured flowers. A recent study by NASA has provided a few colourful blooms for gardeners keen to clean the air.

With a broad range of reds, pinks, whites, and yellows, gerbera daisies are a great way to bring a little liveliness to your garden. These flowers love direct sunlight and a bit of space, so make sure not to leave them in a shady corner of your garden.

NASA notes that these daisies will dutifully clean the air of many toxins, like benzene.

English Ivy — a traditional scene

The hedera helix is a countryside classic, growing up the sides of many an English house. Though it has a bad reputation in the States as being a weed, it can be a lovely addition to your garden if tended to.

According to Goldsmiths, University of London, the English ivy plant is wonderful for wildlife and perfect for purifying the air. Its wide leaves trap particulates and  filter the air.

Wallflower — colourful air cleaning

The wallflower is a great way to bring a little more colour into your back yard. Goldsmiths also names this plant as being akin to the common ivy for it’s particulate-cleansing power. These flowers have a bright display of petals during the first half of the year. You can grow wallflowers in many colours, with purple and yellow popular choices.

Practices — keeping yourself green too!

Plants aren’t the only way a gardener can keep the air clean. You have to consider how you are tending to your garden as well.

From SmilingGardener, here’s more ways a gardener can battle air pollution beyond planting more bushes!

·         Turn waste into wonder with compost. You can turn many waste products into compost to stop it going to the landfill.

·         Try to avoid using corn gluten meal. SmilingGardener notes this meal is made up from genetically modified corn, so best to stay away from using it, if possible.

·         Opt for quiet tools. This one’s more for noise pollution, but it’s certainly an added bonus for the pollution-conscious gardener to take note of!

·         Don’t rely on pesticides. This one is probably a given, but if you can avoid using chemicals on your garden, please do.

·         Think about your indoors too. As well as planting outdoor plants to combat air toxicity, consider bringing in some houseplants to cleanse the air in your home.



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