11 Biofriendly Ways to Give Thanks to the Environment
As it’s November, I thought this month’s Biofriendly DIY could cover ways to give thanks, or give back, to the environment. Since Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and we’re all thankful for what Mother Nature provides us, here are 10 ways to give thanks to the environment:
1. Leave the Leaves
In the past, you might have been told to rake your leaves in order to keep your yard clean during the autumn months. However, leaving your leaves on the ground is actually beneficial to your yard and the environment itself. Leaves help fertilizer the soil and can provide a natural habitat for wildlife during the colder months.
2. Make Your yard Wildlife-Friendly
Since we’re on the subject of providing a natural habitat for wildlife, why not take it one step further and make your whole yard wildlife-friendly. You can do this by adding a birdbath or a small pond to provide a source of water. You can plant native flowers and bushes to provide a food source for the birds, bees, insects and various wildlife who might wander through your yard. There are all kinds of options available, the key is to plant for the benefit of your environment (wildlife included).
3. Plant a tree (or get a living tree for Christmas)
Planting trees in your yard is also extremely beneficial to the environment. Trees provide natural shade and shelter to animals. They take carbon dioxide from the environment and produce oxygen for us to breathe. Trees help improve air quality, mitigate flooding and improve soil quality.
If you’re considering getting a fresh tree for the holidays, considering buying or renting a living tree. This way you can enjoy the benefits of a fresh tree without having to cut one down. You simply return it or plant it in your yard when the holidays are over. Here are some tips on how to care for a living Christmas tree.
4. Grow Your Own Fruits and Vegetables
Growing your own fruits and vegetables is a good way to practice sustainability and help the environment. Not only that, but when you grow your own, you can do so without the use of harmful pesticides and other toxins. This is very important for your health and the health of the environment around you.
So, if you don’t already do so, consider growing your own fruits and vegetables as a way to give thanks for all Mother Nature provides. Trust me when I say, if you care for your garden, it will give back exponentially. Try some of these vegetables to get your fall garden started.
5. Compost to reduce Food waste
To give back to the earth even more, consider reducing food waste by composting. When you have a compost bin, or compost pile, you can use your compost to provide nutrients to your garden and plants. This way you’ll send less food waste to the landfill and you’ll be able to grow more food.
6. Clean Up Your local park or beach
A very simple way to give back to the environment is to clean up your local park or beach. Not everyone cleans up after themselves, even though they should. This, unfortunately, means plastic and other waste products can easily make their way into rivers, streams and oceans. Wildlife can also consume these types of products and/or get caught in them. When you clean up, you are taking care of your local environment and giving thanks for all it provides.
7. Reduce Your Consumption
Reducing your consumption is another way to give back to the environment. The products you buy require materials. Many of those materials are taken from the earth and its resources. The less you consume, the less harm is done to the environment. This goes for clothing, food, energy, transportation, natural resources and more.
8. Recycle or Repurpose
Society has become so enthralled with fast fashion and disposable or single-use products, more waste than necessary is being generated. It’s important to make things last. Once you buy something, do what you can to make it last as long as possible. If you can repurpose or reuse it, then do so. You might be surprised how long something can actually last, if you try. Then, once you are done with it, if it can be recycled, recycle it. The less waste you can send to the landfill, the better.
9. Opt for Reusable instead of single-Use
On the subject of waste, opt for reusable instead of single-use. Single-use products generate an enormous amount of waste. It’s much better for the environment to buy reusable products as they have a much longer lifespan. Buy a reusable mug instead of a paper cup. Opt for a reusable water container rather than a plastic water bottle. Use traditional plates, bowls and silverware, not plastic or paper. It’s cheaper in the long run to go reusable and it’s better for the environment.
10. Save Water every way you can
Another way to give thanks to the earth is the minimize the amount of water you use. Take shorter showers. Use your dishwasher and washing machine only when you have full load. Use gray water to water your plants and garden. Set up drip lines instead of using sprinklers. Consider setting up a rainwater harvesting system in your yard to take advantage of the water falling from the sky. It’ll cost you less money and utilize less of the earth’s resources.
11. Spend More Time Outdoors
Last, but definitely not least, get outdoors. One of the best ways to give thanks to the environment is to get out into it and show it your appreciation. Go for a walk. Take a hike. Go camping. Swim in a nearby lake or stream. Sit out under the stars. Do some forest bathing. Whatever you choose is up to you. The key is to unplug, get outside and spend a little time in nature. It’ll help calm your mind and reconnect you to the environment.