What’s New in Gardening for 2015? The Good, the Bad, and the Greenwashing
While I have no particular interest in trends (whether it’s gardening or fashion or anything else), I do love it when something beneficial or fabulous in gardening catches on fire.
The best ones are usually things gardeners have been doing all along. When they snowball into trends, like organic gardening practices or the benefits of local food growing, there’s a powerful effect. Most of us watch and hope that we’ll get some new recruits to the green side of life.
Yes, there’s always lots of co-opting going on, also known as greenwashing in the eco-friendly realms, but, beyond that, these ideas can also open up good business opportunities, and create a whole new wave of organic gardeners.
Some will eventually give it up, but others will stick with it for life. Come to the green side! We have organic cookies!
Top Ten Trends for Gardening in 2015
To see images, visit my Trends board on Pinterest:
1. Organic gardening
Is organic gardening a trend or the way of the future?
The words ‘organic’ and ‘natural’ are used and abused all over the place, adding confusion to what we really mean by ‘organic gardening’.
To me, it’s an overall guiding principle that directs every decision I make in the garden including choice and placement of plants, how I deal with pests, and how many resources I’ll use to sustain the garden (very few).
It’s a trend I hope takes over the world.
2. Edible gardens anywhere, any time of year
This is one of my favourite trends. The premise is, if you really want to grow something, you will find a way.
There’s all sorts of great new examples of growing anywhere:
- Front yard veggie gardens
- Indoor veggie gardens
- Winter veggie gardens
- Vertical gardens on walls, hanging from ceilings, up the side of buildings
Succulents are arguably the most photogenic plants! Which is probably why images of succulents tend to go viral on Pinterest.
Related: 10 DIY Succulent Projects
4. Repurposed Garden art
Are you calling me biased! You’re right. But I’m not alone. I’ve been singing the praises of garden junk for years. Now there’s a lot more people in the chorus.
Some specific garden art/junk trends are:
- Garden art from natural materials
- Using tall garden art to add interest to a garden
- Rust. Forever.
- Old wooden ladders
- Winter garden art
- Concrete and hyper tufa
To see examples of these trends, visit my Trends board on Pinterest:
5. Bug hotels
Bug hotels are a wonderful example of functional, natural art.
6. Miniature and fairy gardens
I think the garden gnome mania that started in jest a few years ago was the gateway to a new (sincere) interest in fairy and miniature gardens. I like how it attracts gardeners of all ages and genders.
There has been a mason jar craze going on in the DIY world for a number of years, and I think that spurred on the return of the terrarium.
They were super popular years ago and then seemed to fade out as too conventional or boring. But, get the DIYers in on it, armed with some gorgeous succulents, and a whole new realm of possibilities opens up.
8. Seed starting and collecting
Learning to start plants from seed is a rite of passage in a gardener’s life and it certainly opened up a whole new world for me. Suddenly I could grow just about anything I wanted and as much of it as I desired.
Besides the economic benefits, part of the allure of seeds is how beautiful and photogenic they are, simply as natural art. And basically, if it makes a great image, it will grab people online. The fact that they contain our food future, is the real value, of course.
9. Container gardens
Container gardening makes plants portable, and there’s so many creative options. If you want to grow wherever you have space (and sun), containers may be the answer.
10. Going grass-less
If you’re going to grow where the sun shines, sometimes the front garden is the best place. This still freaks a lot of people out who prefer a more conformist and conventional appearance to the yards in their neighbourhood.
I have a feeling we won’t have a full-blown grass-less revolution until the traditionalists die off and we have viable alternatives to grass lawns.
Replacing a lawn with a lot of plants can be both expensive and an ongoing time and resource hog (unless it is totally naturalized). If we develop more options, similar to the usefulness of a lawn (for playing), we’ll be on our way to a much greener approach.
And, if the front garden is the best place to grow food or anything else, I am in favour. But again, I’m biased. I think plants are the most beautiful way to fill just about any space.
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