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Earth Day garden ideas

Devan McGuinness is the award-winning founder behind UnspokenGrief.comUnspoken Grief, a resource and support site for those touched by perinatal loss and grief. She’s a Toronto-based freelance writer whose work has appeared in various pu...

Low-maintenance plants in small gardens

From SheKnows Canada
Earth Day is all about celebrating our Earth and making sure we're doing our part to keep it healthy and thriving. One simple way to celebrate Earth Day is to plant a garden in your own backyard.
Woman gardening

You don't need a lot of time or space to make it valuable. Certain plants and vegetables are perfect for your small backyard garden and are low-maintenance enough that they don't add extra work to your already busy schedule.

Plants

The blanket flowerThe blanket flower

A beautiful plant that produces bright red, orange and yellow flowers, the blanket flower can take a lot of heat with little water. They can tolerate a light frost too, which is perfect for the sometimes unpredictable Canadian climate. Blanket flowers can grow in a space as small as 6 inches and up to 2 feet, while growing up to 3 feet tall, which is perfect for a small space.

Fireworks rodgersiaFireworks rodgersia

This unique-looking sedge gets its name from the interesting pink flower clumps that peek out over the green leaves. They're not picky with sun or shade and can thrive well in either, and while they prefer moist soil, fireworks rodgersia can be planted in normal, sandy or clay soil. With their slow growth rate and minimal spreading, this plant won't take over your small area.

Purple coneflowerPurple coneflower

For a pop of pink or purple colour in your garden, the purple coneflower is perfect. It produces large-sized flowers that will require little work from you and add a beautiful contrast in your garden. They are drought-tolerant and easy to grow, and just a few flowers will make a dramatic difference in your backyard.

Passiflora caerulaPassiflora caerula

If you're looking for a crawling plant, this variety is one of the easiest to manage. Climbing plants typically require more maintenance, but this one only needs to be cut back if it's growing outside its space. The passiflora caerula is a unique-looking blue flower that will complement any space.

Vegetables

LettuceLettuce

Leaf lettuce can be grown nicely spaced out or in crowded rows, which makes it perfect for a smaller garden space. Over the course of a month or two, the lettuce will start to grow to a full cone shape with little needed to be done by you past the initial planting. Disease in a lettuce patch is not common, making it wonderfully low-maintenance. Imagine the great salads you'll enjoy this summer!

Pea podPeas

Peas prefer a colder climate, which is perfect for the unpredictable Canadian spring. You can plant your peas as soon as the soil is able to be worked in early spring, and then you just sit back and watch them grow. Peas are great for small spaces because they grow up a trellis that you can lean against your house or shed, and any variety of peas will work.

ZucchiniZucchini

Zucchini is one of those plants that's known for producing a lot of crop with little work, and it doesn't need a lot of space either. Just plant a few seeds, sit back, and before you know it, you'll have enough for your favourite zucchini bread to last you through the summer.

OnionsOnions

You can plant a few or a lot of onions, depending on the space in your garden. In as little as two weeks, you might start to see some green onions you can use in your salads, soups or baked potatoes, and in a few weeks after that, you'll have full-on onions. It's that simple!

More on gardening

5 Plants that deserve a place in your garden
Gardening is good for the soul
Make your own compost

Photo credit of fireworks rodgersia: wallygrom via Flickr
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