Many Suburban Gardeners rely heavily upon commercial gardening products. Shiny and expensive plastic containers promising the convenience of “Miracle Growth” or “Fast Kill”. Historically gardening didn’t used to be that way – and it doesn’t have to be now or in the future. Choosing not to use synthetic pesticides and fertilisers immediately benefits insect, soil and water life. We can reduce our carbon footprint by choosing local and sustainable alternatives to those made in factories and often shipped over vast distances. Composting organic waste reduces landfill and being water-wise in the driest continent on earth is just common sense. With a little knowledge we can even use household ingredients to make our own gardening solutions. However, making the decision to gardening naturally may also require a change in mindset for some gardeners.
The Japanese have a philosophy they call “Wabi-Sabi” which focuses on the acceptance and appreciation of imperfection and impermanence. Natural gardening is a constant lesson in Wabi-Sabi. There will be holes chewed through leaves. The mulch will be disturbed by foraging birds. There will be ants, and flies, and spiders. A natural garden is a living eco-system and to fully appreciate its beauty you may need to change the lens through which you look. But if you do, you will see a level of beauty, balance and harmony that was once hidden from your view. Your garden will be contributing to the health of the planet rather than detracting from it. What could be more beautiful than that?