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Discover Your Backyard’s Hidden Superpowers

Charleston landscaping

Discover Your Backyard’s Hidden Superpowers

Although Wakanda’s verdant hills are enriched by the metal vibranium in the movie Black Panther, that does not mean your backyard has to be in a movie for it to have some hidden superpowers. Did you know that the soil in your landscape has its own secret superpowers as well? It can absorb and keep certain amount of carbon from the air, which unexpectedly makes these green spaces a crucial asset in today’s ongoing battle against climate change.

The soil in your backyard can store more carbon emissions that could add to global warming compared to the soil found in urban forests and in native grasslands. All of these were according to the research conducted by Carly Ziter, a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Wisconsin Madison. Her study was published in the Ecological Applications journal. Her discovery came as a surprise especially since many homeowners who have yards do not consider them as “nature” or to be advantageous for the environment. But with her research, we now know that our yards do not only benefit us but the community at large as well.

Ziter studied the power of the soil in backyards by asking homeowners in Madison if she can sample their backyard soil. Homeowners who said yes often asked their kids to observe Ziter while she worked on their yard.

As metros continue to find ways to lessen the effect of global warming, a potential solution that always comes up are urban green spaces. They can lower temperatures in places where paved surfaces amplify hot weather, and they could also store storm water to lessen flooding since climate change could lead to boosting rainfall in a few parts of the country.

Up until today, most studies concentrate on bigger green spaces such as parks, which can provide the impression that smaller areas such as yards rarely contribute to the much larger urban ecosystem. But if there is one thing that Ms. Ziter’s study has revealed, it is that people’s backyards can greatly contribute to fighting climate change.

To obtain a clearer picture of the services offered by green spaces in the metro, Ziter got soil samples from about 100 different sites in Madison. The sites vary from open spaces, grass lands, parks, golf courses, and more. She also took soil samples from residential lots. The study revealed that the soil in the forests were great at absorbing water. However, soil on developed and open lands such as Charleston landsaping and golf courses were better at carbon absorption.

It is still unclear why the soil in regular backyards was better at taking up carbon but Ziter thinks it could be due to how homeowners manage their yard such as mowing. Therefore, there is a possibility that the carbon homeowners release using gas powered lawn mowers could block the soil’s ability to absorb carbon. Before we begin chopping forests down and creating more lawns, it is important to consider that Ziter’s study is focused on soils and it did not include the plants and trees that grew on top.

Learn how to make the most out of your backyard. Call Porter Hayes Landscaping LLC if you want to know more.

Porter Hayes Landscaping LLC
Charleston, SC 29419
(843) 532-3270

Porter Hayes Landscaping LLC
2170 Bees Ferry Rd #3 Charleston SC 29419