How to grow plants without peat

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A national newspaper has provided gardening enthusiasts with advice on how to avoid using peat-based composts.

The government recently revealed that it hopes to phase out the products due to their environmental impact.

Peat extraction is responsible for the destruction of lowland bog habitats and also reduces their capacity for carbon storage.

The Guardian asked Wrap waste reduction adviser Peter Hill for advice on gardening without the substance.

He explained that alternative composts are available and that gardeners should opt for one with a peat-free label.

The expert added that there are products which are made from recycled garden waste, which helps to put nutrients back into the earth and prevents the material from clogging up under-pressure landfill sites.

"I've been using peat-free composts for a number of years and wouldn't turn back," Mr Hill told the newspaper.

He added that while they are not ideal for sowing seeds, a little sieving and the addition of vermiculite can remedy the problem.

Meanwhile, gardeners could one day benefit from extra daylight hours in the evening all year round, with the government saying it is willing to change time zones to Single/Double Summer Time.   - 22 March 2010
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How to grow plants without peat

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