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The majority of the users of this site come from the USA and that’s why the content (especially featured products) has a US bias.
After the US, the most readers come from the UK and Australia, followed by Canada, New Zealand and Ireland.
So it looks like we’ve got most of the English speaking gardening world covered.
I’m particularly pleased about this because I pretty much span the gardening world myself – I’m from the UK, I currently live in Australia and I write mainly for Americans.
I was prompted to write about the breadth of Outdoorpowerbuddy’s readership by an article in the Chicago Tribune about the effect of changing climate on gardeners.
The article focuses on the American mid-west and refers to the remarkably un-snowy winter of 2011-2012.
But what is interesting is that the weather in this period has not just been unseasonable in the USA, but in many other parts of the world too.
In the UK there has been little rain since Autumn. There are hosepipe bans, wildlife is threatened, an official drought has been declared in south-east England and in the east, the country’s agricultural heartland, the soil is drier than has ever been recorded.
Meanwhile, in Australia, where ostensibly it has been summer for the last 3 months, rainfall records have been broken and temperatures have been consistently below average.
Quite apart from the immediate difficulties these conditions present, there are some real lessons we as gardeners can take on board from all of this.
Whether you are believe in ‘man-made’ climate change or not, it seems to me that climate seems to be increasingly unpredictable and that weather events are becoming increasingly severe.
This means more frequent severe storms, longer growing seasons and periods of both deluge and drought.
In order to prepare for this we can do the following:
- Plant more native trees and plants – by this I mean plants not just native to your country but native to you region
- Plant more shade trees to alleviate the discomfort of the hottest periods
- Plant more trees generally, as the amount of water they take up helps in times of inundation
- Look for ways to prevent storm water run off from your land, as this causes soil erosion
- Beware of invasive weeds. These will thrive when winters are less harsh, so avoid planting species that have the potential for a thuggish habit
- Beware of more pests. Again, milder winters allow the survival of many more pests than usual.
And, of course, make sure you have the right tools to deal with the consequences of these climate changes – a good chainsaw for storm clear up, a good mower for the lush grass, a string trimmer for your weeds.
How different to normal has the weather been been where you are?
Please add your views and experiences in the comments below.