The Benefits of Closed Loop Gardening

The benefits of closed loop gardening include nutrient and resource recycling.
Reading Time: 3 minutes

The benefits of closed loop gardening include nutrient and resource recycling. Image: Unsplash

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Closed loop gardening works with nature to develop a self-sustaining food growing system.

Having a garden is already an excellent way to help protect the environment and minimize the effects of climate change. Gardens participate in the protection of biodiversity by providing food and habitat for bees and other pollinators. Gardens help improve air quality and cool down the built environment. Gardens also reduce energy consumption by providing shade and windbreaks.  

Some people are turning to closed loop gardening to take gardening one step further on an environmental level. This sustainable and regenerative approach to gardening and agriculture focuses on minimizing water and reducing inputs while maximizing efficiency and environmental benefits.  

Closed-loop gardening aims to create a continuous nutrient and resource recycling cycle. It doesn’t require the use of materials, seeds, or other items to maintain the system. The garden works with nature and develops a self-sustaining system.  

Some of the practices associated with closed loop gardening include:  

  1. Composting- Composting made up of kitchen scraps and plant trimmings can enrich the soil and provide essential nutrients for a closed loop gardening setup. Composting also helps to minimize landfill waste by putting the organic materials back into the ground.
  1. Mulching: Mulch is made from organic materials, including straw and leaves, typically used to cover the soil’s surface. Mulch helps to improve the soil structure and contributes to the organic matter in the soil.  
  1. Rainwater harvesting: Rainwater can be collected and used for irrigation. Doing so reduces the reliance on municipal water supplies and helps to conserve water resources.  
  1. Crop Rotation: Developing a crop rotation helps to prevent soil depletion and reduce the risk of pest and disease buildup  
  1. Polyculture: Closed loop gardening involves planting a variety of crops together, which enhances pest control, soil health and overall resilience.  
  1. Natural pest control: Closed loop gardening emphasizes beneficial insects and companion planting, which helps control pests and minimizes dependence on chemical pesticides and harmful fertilizers.  
  1. Seed saving: Gardeners can save seeds from mature plants, which helps to promote crop diversity and reduces the reliance on commercially produced seeds.  
  1. Using natural materials: Within closed loop gardening, the natural components from the garden can be used as pathways, bed edging, fences, trellises, sheds, etc.  

Closed loop gardening allows us to reduce consumption, including potting mixes, composts, and top soils, which may have high carbon costs in the production of the products and in the packaging and distribution/delivery.  

Healthy soils that come from closed loop gardening act as carbon sinks, sequestering carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and mitigating climate change. Because of the reduction of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides in closed loop gardening minimizes the chemical runoff into waterways and potential harm to non-target organisms. Moreover, it helps to improve water quality by reducing the runoff of pollutants into streams and rivers. Closed loop gardening reduces the use of fossil fuels for synthetic fertilizer production and transportation, which helps to lower greenhouse gas emissions associated with food production.  

By growing food locally and sustainably, closed loop gardening reduces the carbon footprint associated with the transportation and distribution of food. It also encourages a more resilient and self-reliant local food system.  

Additionally, closed loop gardening can serve as a platform for environmental education and awareness and helps gardeners better understand ecological processes and the importance of sustainable land management.  

Closed loop gardening helps us to develop more sustainable and environmentally friendly ways of gardening. It helps to mitigate the environmental challenges associated with conventional farming and gardening methods. Closed loop gardening allows us to think about how natural cycles work and create a system where we must put in as little as possible. It will enable us to have beautiful, self-sustaining gardens that help to make us happy and the environment happy.  

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