The Ecologist Magazine has launched a website at www.idontdigpeat.org.uk to encourage gardeners to take action now and make the ‘Peat-Free Promise’. They are using the site to educate people on how to garden successfully without peat, and visitors can access a whole host of information about peat-free alternatives, such as leaf mould and composted bark, and simple peat-free compost recipes that they can make themselves at home.
Peat is used in compost and soil improvers because it’s cheap, light, retains moisture and stores nutrients. However, in extracting peat from its natural home, its ability to store four times as much carbon as forests is lost. Consequently, 400,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere every year, while a vital habitat for rare birds, dragonflies, butterflies and plants is needlessly destroyed.