Say No to Peat

I will look for alternatives to peat moss in potting mixes and garden soil supplements. Fact: Peat bogs are crucial carbon sinks. They sequester more carbon than any other ecosystem type—forests included. Covering just 3% of our planet, peat bogs store one-third of soil carbon on Earth. SourceTreehugger 

Mer Bleue Bog, Ontario. Photo by Mary McGee.
Mer Bleue bog, Ontario Hinterland Who’s Who

Wetlands like peat bogs are the most biodiverse ecosystems on our planet. When they are destroyed or degraded, many species of plants and animals are affected. In North America today, peat is predominantly used for gardens. Only 10% of Canada’s peat lands are formally protected.  
Fight the twin crises of biodiversity loss and climate change by finding substitutes for peat moss.
Source: ON Nature Magazine 

Look for soil additives, compost and potting soils that are labelled “peat free.” Coconut coir is a good substitute, but does have a considerable transportation carbon footprint. Have you noticed any coconuts growing locally? Products labelled “Organic” and “Environmentally Friendly” may still contain peat. In the UK, the sale of peat-based compost will be banned starting in 2024.  
Make Your Own:
You can make a good potting soil/ growing medium using homemade compost, leaf mold, and inorganic soil elements (loam/sand). More suggestions below.

More about peat in Ontario:
What’s at stake in Ontario’s Ring of Fire | Canadian Geographic
“The Hudson Bay Lowlands are the largest contiguous temperate wetland complex in the world. Beyond their natural beauty, they perform vital ecosystem services that benefit even those who will never visit.”

What’s going on with Ontario’s Ring of Fire? | The Narwhal
“Will the value of the minerals there outweigh the costs of getting to them? Is it a good idea to source materials for clean technology by disrupting a natural carbon sink? What kind of future do First Nations in the region, who have lived there since time immemorial, want for their homelands?“

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