Sustainable Living Tips

sustainable-living

Self-sufficiency and sustainable living have really increased in popularity over recent years, with people yearning to help the environment and to live off of the land. However, sustainable living can be quite a minefield if you’ve never heard of it before – and there are so many things that you can do to become more sustainable, it could be a little bit overwhelming. Below are some easy to follow tips that you can do to become more sustainable.

Get Gardening

One of the easiest things that you can do is to get gardening – plant vegetables and start fruit trees and fruit shrubs. Growing your own vegetables will save you lots of money, plus it is very satisfying to eat something that you put love and care into. Become even more sustainable by using organic mulch to help your garden – this includes homemade compost and mulch made from food scraps and bits and bobs from your garden. You should also use free manure to enrich your soil – if you don’t have animals yourself, local farms often offer up manure for free for people growing vegetables.

You should also save all seeds from your vegetables for next year’s planting, and you should also save fingerlings from potatoes for next year. Any seeds left over can be either sold or given away at seed swaps.

Collect Water

Where possible, save all rain water and use it around the house. You can’t use it for drinking or showering, but you can use it to water your garden and plants and you could distil it and use it for washing up, too. Saving your rainwater throughout the year will give you loads of water ready for the summer, and it’s really worth doing because it’s a free commodity! Rainwater reservoirs are available online.

Learn How to Preserve

Preserving fruit and vegetables is vitally important, because if you’re growing it, it is inevitable that you’ll have an abundance of veg at certain points in the year when everything comes into season. You can preserve fruits easily by turning them into preserves or ice creams. Vegetables can be preserved by sun drying them. You can then keep them in a brown paper bag, or to make them last even longer, can them in oil or brine. You could also freeze vegetables and use them up to six months later.

Raise Animals

There are a huge number of animals that you can raise at home if you have enough land – but even if you haven’t got lots of land, you could still raise chickens. Chickens can be raised for both eggs and chicken meat, cows could be raised for milk and meat, sheep could be raised for wool and meat, and goats could be raised for milk. Chickens are relatively easy to raise and are best for beginners.

You could also raise bees for honey. Honey is the only food product that doesn’t go off or spoil, making it a great commodity. Having bees around will also help to pollinate your plants, meaning that your fruit and vegetables will grow better, too.

Make Your Own

The key to sustainable living is to think, ‘Could I make that myself or do I need to buy it?’ If you can make it yourself, do so. This includes bread, pasta, oatmeal etc. 50 years ago, people baked bread daily – but that trend has disappeared almost entirely, which is a shame. Freshly baked bread tastes delicious and it’s a shame that it isn’t done very often any more. The same goes for pasta – all you would need to buy is plain flour, and if you raise chickens, you have eggs on hand anyway. You should also bake your own cakes, biscuits, treats etc.

Take a look at our fruit & veg series for more information.