DRARA Green Flash No 39 Front Gardens

Environment Action Group
Green Flash No. 39
March 2013
Spring clean your front garden
Great for the environment
Proud of our neigbourhood
Following the Ox-Clean community spring clean by the University and DRARA
volunteers, the good news is that there was much less litter around than last year.
Front gardens too were looking much tidier with some having great ideas. Here are a
few suggestions for ways to keep our front gardens looking attractive and productive
and to keep our residents’ area clean and tidy.
Getting ideas for a new front garden
Take a walk around the area and see what works and what doesn't and what you like
and don't like. It is always surprising what you will see. Bulbs, ferns, euphorbia, and
even grape vines are used to good effect in our community.
Productive containers for colour
Pots can be placed anywhere, allowing plants to be grown in areas of the front
garden that don't have soil. Flowers have an immediate impact on the emotions so it
could be that your patio plant pot will make you happy!Most plants when in flower will
provide nectar for insects. Hebes, which are in leaf all the year round, are drought
tolerant and low maintenance.
If you want containers to look good for more than one season choose evergreen
shrubs and plant into pots at least 45cm (18in) wide.
Growing vegetables in containers
This doesn't require much space and with a little care and attention you can generate
a wide variety of vegetables, including beans, lettuce (Cut and Come Again is
particularly easy to grow), parsley and herbs. Now is to time to sow some seeds and
germinate them inside, ready for them to be put out in pots when it gets a bit warmer.
Combine a secure bike lock and a plant container
PlantLock from London based Front Yard Company frees up cluttered hallways and
stairwells by offering a solid planter to lock your bike to. So you get a safe and tidy
bike storage, plus some green space.
Some reminders!
Put your waste in your bins!
Although not always the case an untidy front garden is likely to signal a house in
multi-occupation. However, whilst untidy on the outside it could suggest to the
potential thief that there are laptops, phones and technology to steal inside.
If you see litter in the road why not pick it up (take care) and put it in a convenient
wheelie bin? It will be better there than in the road.
Wheelie Bins - out in time and back in after collection
While many of us are out on collection day remember that having bins out for more
than a day certainly shows the house maybe unoccupied and again a potential theft
target. Also put them close to the pavement before 7am on Thursdays (DRARA
collection day) in time for the collections. Se below for a link to the schedules.
Wheelie Bins - downsize for added space
By using the recycling service fully, you may find that the size of your bins is too
large and you can have extra space by using smaller wheelie bins. If you would like
a smaller bin, please email recycling@oxford.gov.uk or call 01865 249811
249811 FREE .
Recycle or Bulky Waste Collection
If you no longer have any use for any bulky items but they are still in good condition,
the best option is to pass them on to someone else. The City Council have a list of
recycling organisations. However, if there is no other way of getting rid of them do
use the bulky waste collection service. It's free and bookings can be made on 01865
01865 249811 FREE
Avoid concreting over - try gravel
If you find keeping your front garden really difficult, please consider gravel to cover it
rather than concrete as it allows the rain to go through and reduces the risks of
flooding. Gravel is by far the cheapest permeable hard-landscaping option. It comes
in many colours, and can be bought in bags or by the tonne. You can also buy
recycled products, such as Eco Aggs’s gravel which is a by-product of the ceramics
Some useful weblinks
The DRARA Environment Action Group aims to support practical ways of reducing energy
use and promote environmentally friendly lifestyles. For further information about the
Environment Action Group, please contact: annaeden49@hotmail.com