Reducing your environmental impact in your garden | AMS News

A greener garden: Reducing your environmental impact

While the weather might not feel like it, spring has arrived and for some of us, this brings a chance to renovate our garden ready for some summer socialising.

As you are planning your garden renovation, and sourcing all your materials, now is a great time to pause and consider whether you can be a little more environmentally friendly with your project.

The answer is yes. And here is how you can do this… with our help.

Use recycled aggregates

One of the fundamental materials you are likely to need when renovating your garden is aggregates. These range from materials that you can use as a sub-base for your plant beds, or patios, to the topsoil used for your grass, and the gravel or other materials used for any pathways. We also use recycled aggregates in our concrete, which you can use for your shed base.

Recycled aggregates are becoming an ever-popular choice for businesses, landscapers, and DIYers because they are an environmentally friendly choice. In the UK, approximately 200 million tonnes of aggregates are used each year, and of this supply, around 57 million are sourced from recycled materials*.

What are aggregates?

Aggregates are granular materials used in building and construction.

These materials include gravel, sand, and crushed rock.

Aggregates come in 3 forms, primary, secondary, or recycled. Primary simply means that they have come directly from nature, secondary means they have been generated from the extraction of primary aggregates, and recycled means that they have been used before.

Examples of recycled aggregates include:

What are recycled aggregates?

Recycled aggregates are collected through demolition and construction activities, which are then crushed, screened, and/or washed ready to be used again.

Materials that are often recycled to create aggregates include old asphalt road planing and railway ballast.

Most of the aggregates that we sell at AMS are recycled, as we work with our partner company Commercial Recycling to turn their waste into sellable products.

In 2020 the UK produced around 55 million tonnes of recycled aggregates, which came from construction, demolition & excavation wastes (CDEW) such as crushed concrete and brick, old rail ballast, and material from groundwork.

Benefits of using recycled aggregates

Of course, we are suggesting you use recycled aggregates because a big benefit of them is that they are environmentally friendly.

By using any recycled aggregates you will be reducing the amount of primary (natural) aggregates being used, therefore less natural resources will be needed. Not only will this mean the resources aren’t being touched, but it also reduces the emissions caused in the process of getting these primary materials.

But using recycled aggregates doesn’t just have environmental benefits.

Recycled aggregates can be cheaper to purchase than primary aggregates, so while you are saving the planet, you are also saving money. This is because they are less expensive to produce, and if you are buying them locally, transport costs can be low too.

As we mentioned above, these materials can be used for a whole range of purposes, meaning they are versatile. Not only can you use them for several parts of your garden renovation, but they can also be used in many construction projects and home improvements.

Finally, these aggregates are durable and are now proven to be as structurally reliable as natural aggregates are.

Aggregates to use in your garden renovation

Sub-base aggregates

Whether you are laying a patio, laying turf, or creating a pathway, you will need to have a layer of material as a sub-base.

A sub-base is the load-bearing layer which is why it is needed.

Aggregates that you can use for this layer include:

Avon Material Supplies are able to supply all these recycled aggregates either loose or bagged, depending on how much you might need.

For a smaller garden renovation, we recommend that you order our bagged aggregates from our online shop as they can take up less space, and they are better protected from the elements, meaning they stay fresher for longer.


For any plant beds, turf, or grass, you will need topsoil. We provide manufactured topsoil which is a great alternative when renovating your garden.

Similar to our sub-bases, you can order our topsoil as a bagged or loose aggregate from our online shop. For your ease, we can either deliver it to your house, or you can collect it from our facility at Canford near Wimborne.


If you are creating a small path in your garden, and you don’t want to lay patio slabs down, why not use a slightly more decorative aggregate?

Our Shingle comes in three different sizes, giving you the freedom to choose which one you will think will look best in your garden.

Use a green waste skip or skip bag

Another way you can ensure that your garden renovation is environmentally friendly is by hiring a waste-specific skip or skip bag from us.

At AMS, we work with our partner company Commercial Recycling to dispose of waste collected in our skips and skip bags. This means that as much of the waste we collect is recycled as possible and very little ends up going to landfills.

By hiring a waste-specific skip or skip bag, we can recycle more of your waste.

Bonus: A green waste skip or skip bag will be cheaper for you too!

How to know if you need a skip or skip bag?

Our skip bags can hold up to one tonne of waste, so if you are only doing a small garden renovation, then we would recommend hiring a skip bag.

However, if you think you will produce more bulky green waste then you might want to consider hiring one of our 4, 6, 8, or, 12-yard green waste skips.

Wanting some advice?

There is a lot of information in this article that might be quite new to you. If you would like to discuss your project with one of our experts you can call us on 01202 579579. Our team are very knowledgeable, so will be able to help you figure out what recycled aggregates, or waste management solutions you might need.

Alternatively, you can email any queries to

Don’t forget to tag us in your before and after pictures on Facebook!


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