How much does your garden blend in with your local area? Where did you source your plants? Come to think of it, where did the concrete to make your patio come from? These are just a few of the concerns addressed by hyperlocalism.
Hyperlocalism in gardening is used to describe the practice of using locally sourced materials and plants to design a garden. This means prioritising native and endemic plants over ones that are sourced abroad or from elsewhere near you. Native plants are ones that originated in your country, and endemic plants are those that are particular to your eco-system.
The reason this is a buzzword these days is that it has a number of benefits, the most important of them being that being “hyperlocal” is more environmentally friendly. We will outline more of the benefits below, but first, here are the two big ways of being hyperlocal in your garden:
- Choose plants and materials from your local area
- Find a local gardener
So, why should you choose to go “hyperlocal”? Here are the reasons why hyperlocalism could give you a renewed connection to your local area, save you money and the environment at the same time!
- Reduce your carbon emissions
When you choose concrete that was poured two towns away, or reclaimed wood from the harbour down the way, you will have a smaller carbon footprint than if you had chosen materials made in another country.
This is because building and planting materials have to be transported long distances, and on top of that they are often quite heavy. This means more fossil fuels need to be burned to get them to you.
Try to source local plants and materials from small business owners – this will be your best bet to have an eco-friendly garden. Plus, you will be supporting small local business owners which will contribute to a better community!
- Fit in with your environment
If your garden fits in with its surroundings, it will look a lot more natural than a garden that sticks out like a sore thumb! You can achieve this by doing a little bit of research about the plants that live in your local area, and asking your gardener to help you out with designing a garden that uses them in a beautiful and creative way. Try to use what’s already there to your advantage, and your garden will blend in seamlessly with the environment that surrounds it.
- Go low-maintenance
It’s understandable that you’re not exactly thrilled by the idea of spending evenings and weekends on your hands and knees pulling weeds. Some of us may be, but everyone’s entitled to their own opinion! Hyperlocalism will save you hassle down the line if gardening doesn’t float your boat. Getting plants that fit in naturally with their environment means less garden maintenance for you. This is because exotic jungle plants aren’t necessarily adapted to the UK weather, and will need perhaps more water and heat to survive.
Some plants may grow too quickly or too slowly, which means more attention from you. Locally sourced plants will need less water and chemicals to be kept in check. You can even choose specific plants for their ease of care, so do some research before you go all-out on the bulb sale!
- Benefit local flora and fauna
Native plants benefit the local populations of animals and insects which pollinate your plants, so your garden as well as the surrounding area will become more verdant! By choosing these plants over others, you support the symbiotic relationship between them and their pollinators. The food chain and local ecology will be supported, so when people complain about the bees dying you can say you’re helping!
- Save money!
Last but not least, hyperlocalism could save you money. That is, if you’re savvy about where you source your plants and materials from. Looking specifically for eco-friendly landscaping materials won’t do your wallet any favors, but asking your neighbours if they have any plants you might be able to take a snippet from and replant could be a great idea. Go hunting around the forest near your home, and see if you can find anything to repurpose in your garden. Get creative, ask members of your local community and you could go hyperlocal on the cheap!
If you’re curious about whether a hyperlocal garden could be right for you, get in touch with a local gardener. They will be best equipped to help you out. You can compare quotes from gardeners in your area by clicking here.