‘Problematic’ garden trends to ‘avoid’ or risk ‘dire consequences’

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While there are trends that can make your garden stand out for good reasons, there are also ones that can have the opposite effect. Some garden trends can make your outdoor space appear unappealing or messy, while others can be seen as a waste of money. Express.co.uk has spoken to two gardening experts to get their insight on which garden trends should be avoided in 2023.

Indoor gardening 

Stefan Bucur, founder and owner at Rhythm of the Home with over six years of experience in home improvement, gardening and landscaping claimed that the trend of indoor gardening should be left in 2022.

His reasoning for this is that not all vegetables will thrive when being subjected to only indoor conditions.

The expert said: “While the trendy idea of indoor gardening might be tempting for a lot of people, this trend should probably be avoided for most homeowners and people who have a green thumb. 

“Indoor gardening only works with vegetables that don’t require much sunlight and that can grow in the shade. This severely impacts your ability to grow the plants you actually want to grow and it can also feel very restrictive.”

He also added that planting indoors also often leads to “a lot of clutter, mess and dirt” in your home. Stefan said: “In most situations you should keep your gardening outside and avoid this trend altogether.”

Unnecessary use of pesticides

Unnecessary use of pesticides is another trend to avoid in 2023, according to Emily Jones, a gardeners with over 30 years experience and founder of Tomato Mentor.

She claimed that pesticides can have a “negative impact” on beneficial insects, as well as on the environment itself. Instead she urged that it is best to use them “sparingly and only when absolutely necessary”.

Emily continued: “In order to reduce pesticide use in the garden, careful monitoring of pests is key. Look for signs of an infestation before reaching for the pesticide; this will help you determine whether they are actually needed or not. 

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“Additionally, many people find that natural alternatives such as insecticidal soap or neem oil are just as effective at eliminating pest problems while being less harmful than chemical solutions. Ultimately, it’s always best to choose alternative methods first and then turn to pesticide usage if necessary.”

Mixing too many fragrant plants

While fragrant flowers are a beautiful addition to any garden, Stefan warned that mixing too many of them is not a good idea and should be “avoided”.

He explained: “The trend of bringing a lot of fragrances in your garden is not bad in and of itself but you have to be careful what fragrances you will combine in your garden when mixing multiple species together. 

“For example mixing savoury herbs with strong smelling flowers can make the herbs off putting and unappetising. If you know your way around garden fragrances you can try this trend but if you’re not sure you can just skip it and go with basic herbs and plants.”

Overuse of repurposed wooden pallets and cinder blocks

The gardening pro also noted that the overuse of repurposed wooden pallets and cinder blocks is not a trend to follow in 2023.

Stefan said: “While this can be pretty environmentally friendly, if you overdo it, your garden will look unappealing. This is especially true for your curb appeal if your garden is situated at the front of your home.”

Relying too much on artificial lighting 

Too much reliance on artificial lightning can be “problematic” in the garden, according to Emily. She warned that artificial lights may seem like an easy way to make gardens look beautiful, but overuse of these lighting systems can have “dire consequences for plants” and other living creatures in the garden.

The expert explained: “First, many artificial lights emit a lot of heat, which can be damaging to plants and soil. 

“Furthermore, they can disrupt natural cycles in the environment by providing continuous illumination at night when otherwise it would be dark. This disruption affects nocturnal animals who rely on these cycles for their survival. 

“Additionally, artificial lighting has been known to attract pests such as mosquitoes, moths and even mice who often use the warmth from the artificial lights as shelter during cold spells.”

Using too many synthetic materials like plastic pots and decorative items

Even though they look nice when first purchased, Emily noted that they “quickly become faded and brittle” due to exposure to the elements. 

Instead of relying on plastic pieces, the gardening pro recommended opting for natural materials like terracotta or ceramic planters that will last longer and look more stylish. 

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