Green garden products could soon carry an official organic label.

Tracking down organic products can be tricky (copyright: IPC)

The move is aimed at cutting confusion over eco-friendly claims, branded ‘greenwash’ by environmentalists.

Charity Garden Organic has issued a set of traffic light-style organic guidelines. Red lights show what is not acceptable while a green light indicates best practice.

The guidelines say peat is “never acceptable in an organic garden” and that soluble chemical fertilisers, GM products, hydroponics, copper-based fungicides and patio heaters are off-limits, too.

Also unacceptable is using carpet as mulch, creosote-treated railway sleepers and leafmould from woodlands on domestic gardens.

The calls were made at a conference this month, hosted at Garden Organic’s garden centre in Warwickshire.

Garden Organic chief executive Myles Bremner said a “mechanism to differentiate between organic and non organic” could be desirable.

Garden Organic chief executive Myles Bremner (copyright: IPC)

He said it was “frustrating” that, at the same time as more people are growing their own and taking up gardening, there is a “corresponding increase in use of weedkillers and peat”.

Myles explained: “We know that consumers want to make better informed choices from an environmentally sound perspective.” He said products such as Fiskars weed puller should replace weedkillers.

“We don’t see a place for peat in the organic garden”, summed up Myles, calling for the government’s 2020 peat ban to be brought forward to 2016 for amateur gardeners.

Organic products have taken a significant hit during the economic downturn.

In the UK, sales of organic goods fell by 5.9 per cent to £1.73billion during 2010, reports the Soil Association