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Sustainable Tips for World Food Day

Sustainable Tips for World Food Day Header Image

Sustainable Tips for World Food Day

Adopt an Eco-Friendly Attitude Towards Food with Our Handy Tips on World Food Day


Today is World Food Day, an important day in the calendar of all who seek to live sustainably! Across the globe, events will be taking place to highlight the importance of food growth and sustainability, especially when it comes to nations with food scarcity.

We can all do our own part to ensure that we adopt a sustainable and eco-friendly attitude when it comes to food. Here are just a few of the ways you can start.

Growing your own vegetables will save you money, time in the supermarket, and slash your carbon footprint. Portable containers, crates or pots are a perfect place to start if you don't have enough space for a dedicated vegetable patch.

grow your own

Invest in a greenhouse to increase your yield of fresh fruit and vegetables and to save space, you can grow legumes (runner beans, broad beans, French beans, and peas), squashes and pumpkins vertically. Use a smaller planter to grow salad leaves, herbs and tomatoes grow well on balconies and patios.

greenhouse

Buy a water butt to collect rainwater. There are many good reasons to install a water butt, particularly if you’re looking to save money on your water bills if your home is run by a water meter.

water butt

Filling your buckets and watering cans with naturally collected rainwater also means that you will avoid the use of chlorinated tap water, which can be toxic to plants. You'll also have a consistent supply of water to keep all your fruit and veg fed through any dry spells!

aerobin

Making compost is all about layers. Regularly adding alternating layers of green (nitrogen-rich) materials like grass cuttings, weeds, and uncooked vegetable peelings and brown (carbon-rich) materials like leaves, wood chippings, shredded paper and cardboard, and sticks allows the compost to truly thrive. Some hot composters such as the Aerobin can make compost in as little as 12 weeks.

Using nutrient rich compost can increase the quality and yield of any fruit and veg you grow.

Tips To Have A Sustainable Halloween

Tips To Have A Sustainable Halloween

Halloween seems to become more popular each year, with increasing numbers of families joining in on the festivities, it’s a time to get creative and showcase your spooky side.

Pumpkins are a natural and iconic part of Halloween, but there are also many elements of Halloween celebrations which highlight ecologically unfriendly practices. To help you have a more sustainable Halloween, we’ve put together some useful tips!

Carving a pumpkin for Halloween has become a time-honoured tradition, starting in Ireland, and moving to the United States via Irish immigrants, it is nearly impossible to not see one adorning a doorstep on a late October evening.

However, the use of pumpkins during Halloween has become a large source for food waste, with an average of 18,000 tonnes being sent to landfill each year, but there are ways to prevent this.

Food

pumpkin pie

It’s all to easy to forget that Pumpkins are food, with a large variety of dishes being able to be made:

• Roasted pumpkin seeds are one of the easiest quick snacks to make and taste delicious! Simply use the seeds from the pumpkin and place on a baking tray in the oven. Cook with salt or sugar depending on your preference.

• Pumpkin Pie is another popular dish, utilising the flesh of the pumpkin as a pulp to make the pie filling.

• Pumpkin pie leather (also known as pumpkin fruit leather) is made by dehydrating the pureed pumpkin, a great snack while on the go!

• Pumpkin soup is a nice and simple dish to make, and perfect for the colder months.

Composting

pumpkin

Pumpkins make ideal compost fodder, just make sure to reduce the pumpkin into smaller pieces before composting, this will speed up the decomposition process. This is even more important when placing pumpkin waste in to a wormery, as too much food at once can cause problems for the worms. It is imperative to remove any traces of candle wax from the pumpkin before composting.  You can even organise a pumpkin smash, turning a laborious chore in to a fun filled activity for the kids!

Most Halloween treats and sweets can also be composted but it is ideal to always use them if you can, pass them on to friends, or donate them if you can’t eat them in your own household.

Growing

seeds

Pumpkins are filled to the brim with seeds, and if you’re not looking to compost or eat them, why not grow them?

• Take the biggest seeds you can find and aim to keep around three times the number of pumpkins you are looking to grow, this will give the plants a better chance to grow.

• Dry out the seeds for roughly one week, before storing them in a cool, dry place. Pumpkin seeds are typically sewn in the latter half of April, starting with indoor growth, and then planting outdoors later.

Utilising the benefits of Pumpkins isn’t the only way to have a sustainable Halloween, you can also adopt an eco-friendly attitude to Halloween costumes and decorations.

How to Find a Sustainable Christmas Tree

How to Find a Sustainable Christmas Tree

Find out how to spot a sustainable Christmas tree, and replant it year after year, with Original Organics.


Each and every day we are drawing closer to Christmas, and of course no Christmas is complete without a Christmas tree. You might be wondering just how eco-friendly a Christmas tree can really be? This is a reasonable concern to have, and it’s one that we are going to address, and hopefully give you a better insight in to Christmas trees, and what type is right for you. After all, we all like to try and live as sustainably as we can, so even a small change such as swapping out one Christmas tree for another, can make a big difference.

Artificial Trees

artificial trees


Artificial trees are the biggest point of contention; can they really be sustainable? The answer isn’t quite as black and white as you might imagine. Most artificial Christmas trees are made a combination of plastic and metal components, with a large proportion being produced using PVC (a type of plastic which has a very negative effect on the environment).

Not only is PVC unable to be recycled, with 100% of it being sent to landfill in the UK, it also means the majority of artificial tress are made in China (where most PVC products are produced). This results in a massive carbon footprint to ship them to the UK, a footprint which gets bigger every year as the population increases.

In order to offset the impact to the environment, you would have to re-use the same tree each year for up to 20 years, which seems unlikely for most people, but no impossible. The other alternative is to buy a pre-loved artificial tree, which would be less damaging than buying a new one.

Real Trees

real trees


Some people may be concerned that buying a real tree may promote deforestation or unsustainable logging practices, however there are ways to ensure this isn’t the case. First, if you are looking to buy a real tree for Christmas, look for an FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) approved tree, this means that it is from a sustainable source.

Buy from a local tree farm if you can, this will cut down the carbon footprint of buying it. One benefit of buying a real tree is that during the growing period, the tree will absorb carbon dioxide, while the soil will also trap ten times the amount of C02 as the tree.

If you buy a tree with the roots intact you can also keep it growing for future Christmases, just make sure to keep it well watered and cared for while it is indoors during the Christmas period.

If you don’t want to keep the tree, or can’t, one of the distinct advantages of buying a real tree is that it can easily be recycled in a variety of ways, with mulch or compost being an effective way to dispose of it.

Luckily we have partnered with a sustainable christmas tree farm to provide you with the very best premium Christmas trees, grown here in the UK. Your tree will be with you within 24 hours of cutting, straight from the tree farm. Pre-order yours today while stocks last.

Which Flowers To Plant In Winter

Which Flowers To Plant In Winter Header Image

Gardening is a passion that is near and dear to our hearts, it is such a satisfying art, where the rewards commonly justify the effort. Of course, the Great British Summertime is a time of year for which we usually associate gardening, where the flowers are in full bloom, and the bees are out in droves.

We don’t necessarily equate gardening with the colder months, but that doesn’t mean that we have to stop gardening as soon as we see the first sign of frost, the very opposite in fact. The winter months can be a very productive time for flowers, so read through our list of flowers to plant in winter, and you too can make the most of those colder months!

Flowers To Plant

Tulips

Tulips have a tendency to grow fast, so avoid planting them too early as they may rise up too soon and freeze during winter. The time for planting tulips is quite broad, from mid-autumn until December is usually a good time, but sometimes even later will also work.

tulips

Daffodils

September is a great time to plant daffodils, but similar to tulips, anytime before December will usually yield results. Try to plant in groups or clumps, as they will look much more natural as opposed to being solitary flowers.

daffodils

Alliums

When planting the bulbs, make sure that the hole is roughly twice as deep as the length of the bulb, to ensure full growth. Alliums are fairly durable, so don’t require watering, the regular rainfall throughout winter will provide more than enough.

alliums

Hyacinths

If you want your hyacinths to bloom around Christmas time, its best to plant bulbs around September time. They’re a great addition to any garden, especially near to paths or doorways due to their particularly impressive scent. Due to the size of the flower heads, it’s recommended that they are supported by a small structure or stake, this will prevent collapse.

hyacinth

Honeysuckle

Honeysuckle requires a lot of sunlight to produce full flowers, it will also need plenty of watering during the drier days, at least until it has had a chance to grow. Afterwards it is very easy to tend to, and only needs pruning if it is growing too large.

honeysuckle

Foxgloves

It is important to note that foxgloves are poisonous, so it’s imperative to keep pets away, especially if they are prone to eating plants. Some varieties of foxglove can grow in complete shade, which makes them ideal for the darker winter months, where sunlight is scarce. Foxgloves require very little care, which makes them a very low-maintenance option. The effects of the coldest weather on the plant can be prevented by using a fleece jacket.

foxgloves

Delphiniums

Delphiniums will benefit from a layer of mulch to keep them warm through the winter period. It is best to plant them in a place with minimal wind, as they are prone to collapsing if over-stressed. Soil must not be too dry, as the delphiniums will suffer.

delphiniums

Bluebells

Bluebells are very resistant to being planted at the wrong time of year, however it is still best to plant in late autumn and winter, and they fare well in shade. Bluebells can even be planted in clay soil, provided that it has been enhanced with compost.

bluebells

Crocus

Crocuses need full sunlight during the winter months, with close spacing between bulbs allowing them to grow as a group. Well drained soil is best for crocuses, with cold temperatures being ideal for their growth, due to their natural resistance. Of course the cold weather can make the ground much more unpleasant to be kneeled on for long periods, use of a kneeler or garden board can alleviate some of the worst effects of cold and wet ground.

crocus

Camassia

Camassia are very tolerant to all soil types and acidities, perfect if you have diverse garden conditions. During winter they will need a layer of mulch to keep them insulated, at least for their first year, afterwards they can adapt to the cold. They are even tolerant of damp conditions, due to their origins of growing near to streams.

camassia

All your winter planting tools and requirements can be found here.

How To Stay Warm In Your Garden This Autumn

How To Stay Warm In Your Garden This Autumn Header Image

How To Stay Warm In Your Garden This Autumn

Chimeneas, Fire Bowls and Fire Pits, Which One Is Right For Your Garden?

With the colder months drawing in, its more important than ever to make the most of our gardens before it gets too cold. Gardens can be a communal, and a productive space, but no matter how you choose to use your garden, there are ways in which you can ensure that you, and your friends and family can stay warm. There are a variety of products on the market which can keep you garden nice and toasty, but we prefer the more traditional methods, something a bit more elemental, something that can make a statement.

Chimeneas

Chimenea

A traditional method for keeping warm, as well as for cooking, a chimenea is a historical design that has been used for several centuries. Distinctive due to their unique shape and design, chiminea’s are most often produced in clay, but can also be made from Iron and other metals, both are exceptionally good at retaining heat and very durable. You can even cover your chimenea when it’s not in use to stop it becoming weathered in adverse weather.

With a clay chimenea it is advisable to place a few inches of sand at the bottom of the bowl to dissipate some of the heat away from the clay and prevent it from cracking.

Some chimineas also include doors, helping to keep in the heat even more, this also has the bonus of keeping embers from escaping it. Grills are another common feature of chimineas, allowing you to cook food in your garden and make the experience a much more communal one.

Fire Bowls and Pits

fire bowl

Fire bowls and pits
create a different ambience to chimeneas, where a chimenea is a much more contained way of enclosing a fire, a fire bowl or pit is much more open to the elements. For this reason, there is an extra element of safety involved, embers and ashes can be spread around much easier, so this is something to consider when looking at fire bowls and pits. Like chimeneas, some fire bowls and pits come with grills to cook food.

Fuel

fuel

Both fire bowls and chimeneas need a source of fuel to keep burning, once the fire has started it can keep going for varying lengths of time, depending on the fuel source. Firewood or kindling is a great way to get the fire started, and we would always advise using a sustainable source of wood for your fire bowl or chimenea. If you are using wood that you have sourced yourself, it is important to use wood that is dry, any moisture at all can cause smoke clouds, something you don’t want to coat your garden!

Another fuel source you can use is coal, but if you are sitting close to it make sure to make a smokeless variety. Not only will this be a much more pleasant experience to be around, but it is also much less harmful for the environment, with less pollutants being released into the atmosphere. Coal can burn at higher temperatures too, something to be aware of especially when using it in a chimenea, it also burns for longer.

Food

bbq

Both chimeneas and fire bowls can cook food, and the type of food you can cook with them is very open, but here are a few ideas to get you started.

  • Barbecue – much like a standard barbecue, you can use your chimenea and fire bowl to cook food over a metal grill for an authentic outdoor experience.
  • Chimeneas work particularly well when it comes to cooking dough-based foods, pizza, bread, and so much more.
  • Wrapped in a bit of foil, you can cook some delicious baked potatoes.
  • Using your chimenea as a smoker is another great idea, use wood for smoking fish, or really anything you want to.


Which One Is Right for You?

Fire bowl or chimenea, which one you prefer really depends on the aesthetic you are trying to achieve in your garden. The practical uses of each are similar yet with enough differences to warrant some thought over. Hopefully this guide has given you a better idea about what both are about, and you can now make a more informed decision.

Still not sure? Take a look at our whole range here.

How To Keep Your Greenhouse Clean For Winter

How To Keep Your Greenhouse Clean For Winter

Get Your Greenhouse Prepped For The Colder Months Ahead With These Handy Tips


Autumn and winter is a fantastic opportunity to maintain several garden tools and structures: water butts, sheds, tools, gutters and more. One of the most intimidating garden structures to keep tidy and clean is a greenhouse, with the larger sized ones being particularly daunting. However, keeping your greenhouse maintained is a great way to increase the amount of light being absorbed by your plants, increase the efficiency of your gardening, and bring you piece of mind. Another benefit to cleaning your greenhouse is that it gives you a chance to eliminate any dirt, moss, and pests before continuing planting.



De-Clutter

greenhouse

One of the first tasks you should focus on before doing anything else is de-cluttering. Many of us will be the first to admit to hoarding items that we have the best intentions of using but knowing we probably never will. Old pots, broken containers, and expired plant food have a habit of sticking around, but it doesn’t mean we have to throw them away, many items can be recycled or reused to have another lease of life. Even if you can’t find a use for an item, it doesn’t mean that someone else wont, always consider giving away items to friends and family, with disposal being a very last resort.

If you have any plants currently inside of your greenhouse, now is the time to temporarily remove them. If you don’t have anywhere warmer to keep them for the time being you can cover them with a fleece.



Clean

greenhouse

Removing extraneous items provides a chance to focus on cleaning not only the items used inside the greenhouse, but also the greenhouse itself. We always recommend using eco-friendly alternatives to bleach and most store-bought cleaners, these can either be products which have been designed to have little to no impact on the environment, or you can also make your own home-made cleaner using lemon and vinegar. Using harmful cleaning products can also cause damage to any plants you have in your greenhouse, or ones that you’re are hoping to add to it.

Start by cleaning any tools or items removed from the greenhouse, and then move on to the greenhouse itself. Depending entirely on where your greenhouse is situated, cleaning the outside glass can be one of the easiest or one of the hardest parts of the process. A sponge, bucket, and scouring brush will be your best friends during this stage! This process can be made easier by using a water butt in your garden, you can even add a hose to the water butt to speed up the process.

The interior of the greenhouse should be an altogether easier affair now that you have emptied all the items from inside it. Start from the top, as any detritus that falls can be cleaned once you get to the bottom.  

If your greenhouse has gutters, its vital that you remove any leaves and detritus from them, as these can easily build up and cause problems. The use of a Hedgehog gutter brush can help you clean the leaves out and prevent most leaves from settling in the first place. If you have a potting table or station, this can make the effort of cleaning and keeping your greenhouse organised much easier.



Organise

planting table

If you like to keep all your tools, pots, etc. inside of your greenhouse, there are several ways you can keep them organised. A potting station or potting table can be a great place to store and organise your tools, or if you don’t have space inside your greenhouse you can place one outside. Attachable hooks can be a great way to store your watering can and other oft used tools in an easy to reach spot, try using overhead wires and pegs to keep your gloves on hand (no pun intended).

Utilise old jars and condiment containers to store your smaller tools and planting accessories, not only does this give you an almost limitless supply of storage containers, it is also eco-friendly.

Larger tools can be kept in portable storage containers to make it easy to transport, these have the added benefit of being able to be put in your car boot, so if you want to help relatives or friends with their gardens, you can easily do so. If you have multiple containers it’s easy to forget what is in each one, so label every container to make your life easier in the long run! Alternatively, you can dedicate an entire space to your tools, reserving the space inside your greenhouse purely for planting and growing.

Greenhouses are likely to produce waste so it’s imperative to have a convenient way to dispose of your waste to hand. A wheelbarrow, composting cart, or garden cart gives you the freedom to easily wheel your garden waste to your composter or wormery.

The Benefits of Composting

the benefits of composting header image

The Benefits of Composting

There are a number of ways to get involved with composting, from using a standard wooden composter, Wormery, hot composter, and more!


How To Compost

compost

  • First of all, you need a container to hold your compost (view our range here).

  • Secondly, you need a location. Different types of containers will work better in different environments, but generally you want a consistent temperature as much as possible.

  • Some composters are suitable for outdoors, such as larger wormeries and garden composters

  • If space is an issue you can also use a container design to be used indoors, such as a Bokashi Bin or similar items.

What To Put In It?

leaves

  • Generally a mix of brown and green materials is advised

  • Green materials includes kitchen waste, grass, and weeds

  • Brown materials includes wood, cardboard, and dead leaves

  • Lime can change the acidity of the composter if there is an imbalance

  • A wormery will need Tiger Worms in order to function

Maintaining It

compost pile

  • Depending on your type of composter, you may need to turn the materials inside of it to add air in to the mix

  • Some composters are designed with this in mind, and have functions to allow the turning more easily, such as the Maze 245 Litre Compost Tumbler

  • Wormeries have different needs to traditional composters, you can find out more about Wormeries here

Using Your Compost

growing

  • Once your compost is ready you can use it in a variety of ways

  • If you're growing vegetables and herbs, the compost can be placed around the base of these plants to ensure better and healthier growth

  • Adding compost to grass will maintain and improve a healthy lawn

  • Mix with soil for use with potted plants, adding additional nutrients to the plant

  • Flower beds can be improved with the addition of compost, giving the plants an extra boost

The Best Veg To Grow In Winter

Top 10 Veg To Grow This Winter

From turnips to chicory, find out exactly what veg to plant this winter with Original Organics.

We all love to garden, it’s one of the most rewarding pastimes, a true labour of love for all the green thumbed among us. While we like to make hay while the sun shines, there is also something to be said for when the sun isn’t shining, which (lets be honest) is all too often in the UK! Those colder winter months bring frost to our gardens, snow to our flower beds, and ice to our water features.

However, that doesn’t mean that we have to stop! On the contrary, winter can be one of the most productive times of year to grow certain vegetables, so to help you, we’ve put together a list of the best veg to grow in the coming months, read along with us below.

Turnips

turnip

Turnips are incredibly hardy and can withstand some of the more adverse conditions that winter brings. Frost won’t deter these stalwart vegetables but it’s important to keep an eye on the ground, if it freezes it can spell trouble for your turnips. Stews and soups will benefit from the addition of turnips, a perfect combination for colder weather.

Chicory

Chicory

Chicory is a tough little plant, able to endure all the way through winter and into Spring, either in a greenhouse or directly outdoors. While we traditionally think of salads as a Summer-time cuisine, who’s to say you can’t have a delicious winter salad? In fact, there are some fantastic recipes out there for winter salads, many involving chicory. However, if you’re not in the mood for a salad, why not try adding chicory to your pasta dishes for a bit of extra flavour.

Cabbage

Cabbage


Cabbages fair well during the colder weather, but they still require a considerable amount of light, so try to make sure they aren’t planted in shade. There is a wide variety of cabbages to choose from, including Brunswick, Late Flat Dutch, Protovoy, and many more. If you stick to seeds labelled ‘winter’, ‘cold’, or similar, you can’t go wrong. Extremely cold weather (-5 degrees and below) can damage cabbages, so it is recommended that some sort of cold protection is used.

Carrots

Carrots

Considered by some to be better tasting than their summer variety, carrots grown in winter can flourish with minimal care. A cloche or fleece can help protect carrots from frost and snow, while raised beds can help prevent some of the worst effects of cold weather, as the distance from the ground helps to keep the soil warmer during winter.

Kale

Kale

Much like Chicory, Kale can survive all the way through winter and in to spring. However, like most vegetables in winter, the chance of survival is increased through use of a hoop tunnel or greenhouse. Unlike cabbage, kale does not mind being in the shade, opening more opportunities for planting. Kale is a great addition to any soup, and pairs well with sweet potatoes and chicken.

Brussels Sprouts

Brussels Sprouts

A staple of any good Christmas dinner (whether they’re eaten or not), brussels sprouts fare very well in winter, however it is best to first start them indoors before transplanting outdoors. As they grow they can become very top heavy due to their shallow roots, so some structural support may be needed in order to protect them. Long term snow can significantly damage brussels sprouts, so it’s wise to prepare in advance if snow is predicted.

Lettuce

Lettuce

Winter lettuce can grow throughout all of winter, with most varieties becoming ready to harvest in just over 4 weeks. Lettuce should be grown in rows spaced 30cm apart for the best results, all weeds should be removed so that the lettuce can absorb all the available nutrients, with no competition. Adding compost can ensure that the lettuce has an abundance of nutrients. An Aerobin or Wormery can be a great source of compost that you can produce yourself.

Pak Choi

Pak Choi

Perfect for salads and stir fries, pak choi does an exceedingly good job at growing in colder weather. It is recommended that the seeds are first grown in modules or cells to avoid slugs eating the seedlings, and then transferred to a moist soil patch. A fleece can be used to avoid the inevitable onset of airborne pests.

Onions

Onions

Onions require plenty of sunlight, take this in to account when choosing a location to grow them. A heavy layer of mulch on top of the onions allows the soil to retain moisture and keep them warmer during the coldest parts of winter. Winter onions take longer than regular onions to grow, so keep this in mind when planning your garden.

Leeks

Leeks

Leeks tend to grow best in open ground but can also be grown in raised beds. Snow cover will not affect these hardy vegetables, in fact the snow will act as an insulation for them during cold weather. Leeks also have the advantage of being able to be perennialized, also known as perpetual leeks, if left unharvested.


All your winter planting tools and requirements can be found here.

5 Ways to Become a Greener Gardener this Year

We can't wait for the 2021 gardening season to get going and, as days get longer, it no longer feels far away. So, with the help of Original Organics, how can we all become better (& greener) gardeners this year?

Take a Swing at Vegan Gardening

Growing your own vegetables will save you money, time in the supermarket, and slash your carbon footprint. Portable containers, crates or pots are a perfect place to start if you don't have enough space for a dedicated vegetable patch.

Invest in a greenhouse to increase your yield of fresh fruit and vegetables and to save space, you can grow legumes (runner beans, broad beans, French beans and peas), squashes and pumpkins vertically. Salad leaves, herbs and tomatoes grow well on balconies and patios.

Have a Go at Upcycling

Reduce waste in your garden and get creative by reusing items that would otherwise be heading for landfill.

If you’re planning DIY projects, think about how you can use old pieces of furniture in the garden. Bathroom and kitchen renovations mean old baths and sinks can make striking statement pieces in the garden when filled with flowers and foliage.

Take a look in our Garden section for inspiration.

Make Your Own Compost

Start off your compost from kitchen and green waste in a quiet corner of your garden.

Making compost is all about layers. Regularly add alternating layers of green (nitrogen-rich) materials like grass cuttings, weeds and uncooked vegetable peelings and brown (carbon-rich) materials like leaves, wood chippings, shredded paper and cardboard, and sticks allows the compost to truly thrive.

The Aerobin (below) is a hot composter. Hot composting reduces the composting process to as little as 12 weeks!

Invite More Wildlife into Your Garden

Invite more wildlife into your garden by not mowing all of your lawn, planting some wildflowers and leaving an area of your garden to become wild and grow naturally. This will make an ideal habitat.

Pile leaves, wood and fallen branches to make a hedgehog habitat, plant pollinator-attracting plants and put food out for the birds. A healthy ecosystem will also mean fewer pests.

Collect & Save Rainwater

In dry spells, always prioritise water-use by which plants need it most, like young plants, greenhouses, hanging baskets and window boxes.

Buy a water butt to collect rainwater. We offer a range of high-quality equipment for the conservation of water, with speedservice at great value prices.

There are many good reasons to install a water butt, particularly if you’re looking to save money on your water bills if your home is run by a water meter. Filling your buckets and watering cans with naturally-collected rainwater also means that you will avoid the use of chlorinated tap water, which can be toxic to plants.

Explore Original Organics and discover more sustainable solutions for 2021.

Sustainable New Year's Resolutions for 2021

Become zero waste

Going zero-waste might be one of the toughest sustainable resolutions to commit to this new year. But don’t let that keep you from trying - slowly reduce your waste bit-by-bit, a little more week-by-week, and who knows what your lifestyle may look like by the end of 2021. If you don’t get down to a completely zero-waste lifestyle, you can be still proud that you have reduced your waste and environmental footprint. If each and every one of us did this, just imagine the impact it would have on our environment. So, how can you do it?

Start composting

Do you know how to compost? If not, don’t worry. Learning this valuable skill will further reduce your waste and there’s a plethora of information on the internet to draw from. Nowadays, state-of-the-art composters make the process even easier! Adding your kitchen and garden waste to a compost bin will cause it to decompose and create amazing fertiliser for your garden. If you want to cut down the composting process to as little as 12 weeks, the Aerobin Hot Composter is the solution for you.

Grow your own food

If you have a garden or – if you’re really lucky – an allotment space, you have the opportunity to grow your own fruit, vegetable, and herbs. This is definitely something to commit to doing this year. Grow Your Own Kits make growing your own produce simpler than ever before, and with the possibility of further lockdowns and with food currently flying off the shelves, why not grow your own delicious fruit and vegetables? Not only will you be benefiting from eating healthy, organic food, you will also benefit from the countless mental benefits that gardening provides.

Teach the kids

Our range of Children’s Growing Kits let you and your little ones grow fruit and vegetables that the whole family can enjoy. With easy-to-follow instructions and advice, you can watch on safe in the knowledge that your kids will soon be master gardeners. Gardening really is fun and education for all the family!

More time in nature

Here’s a simple resolution that everyone can do. Find a local park or somewhere away from the noise – even if it’s just a garden or a balcony with your favourite plants. Being in nature has endless benefits for your physical and mental health. Dedicate to taking some time to read, to meditate, or just be in nature and watch as your well-being improves.

Invest in a water butt

One of the most useful and precious resources on the planet is water. Though we love to moan about the infamous British & Irish weather, we are incredibly fortunate that rainfall in the UK and Ireland is such a regular occurrence. Even so, we are all too familiar with hosepipe bans and often we experience droughts during particularly dry summers. Even so, 2020 also saw the driest May on record in East Anglia with less than 5% of the normal rainfall. Unfortunately, this does not seem to be an isolated incident.

Increased demand for water puts intense pressure on our water network as well as the environment. The new National Framework for Water Resources has warned that Britain will run short on water between 2025 and 2050, stressing that the average person needs to reduce their water use from 143 to 110 litres per day.

It's important that we all stay mindful of our water use to save water where we can, especially as avid gardeners. This can be as simple as using a watering can rather than a hose. The most useful way to make sure you aren’t wasting this precious resource is to catch and collect your own water to be used in your garden using a water butt, attached to a downpipe, ready to catch rainwater.

Get a bamboo toothbrush

There are approximately 3.5 billion toothbrushes used annually across the world and the vast majority of them are plastic, meaning they hang around for centuries. Strange to think the first-ever plastic toothbrush is probably sat in a long-forgotten waste tip somewhere waiting for a future equivalent of the fictional rubbish robot, Wall-E to discover it again. Switch to a bamboo toothbrush this year which is biodegradable to replace those plastic toothbrushes which can’t break down.

Plant a tree

Plant a tree in your garden or somewhere else. It will only bring happiness to you and nature. It doesn’t even have to be a tree. Just plant something and get your hands dirty.

Conclusion

Trying to reduce our impact on the environment is incredibly important. As a community, we can try to reduce our use of single-use plastic items as well as our use of Earth’s precious resources such as fuel, food and waterIn early 2020, the UK government’s waste advisory board reported that 4.5m tonnes of food a year is wasted, which amounts to a total worth of £14bn. This amounts to £700 for an average family with children. We can all make a difference by making small changes, we can try to not buy items we do not need. Making a shopping list for the week is a simple and easy way to reduce food waste. This same principle can be applied to single-use items such as plastic straws and drinks that are sold in plastic bottles. Try to buy items that will last a lifetimeCleaning products are now available to buy that not only use completely natural ingredients but also feature containers which are completely reusable. If we all make these small changes, we can help curb the tonnes of waste mounting in landfill. 

So, what will your sustainable new year's resolution be for 2021? Head over to our Instagram and let us know!

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