Drought resistant plants and water saving tips for your garden!
Water is one of our most precious resources, and during hot and dry weather, water used in the garden can amount to 50% of your total water used. You can have a beautiful garden using less water.
These simple tips will help you give your plants the water they need with as little waste as possible.
Everyday watering tips:
When you are watering your plants there are many things you can do to make better use of water in your garden, for example:
- Use a watering can instead of a hose.
- If you do use a hose, use a trigger to control the flow.
- Water early in the morning or late at night so that water doesn’t evaporate in the heat of the day before it can reach the roots.
- Leave plants and shrubs dry until they show signs of wilting – watering too often can keep roots shallow and weaken plants.
- Weeding regularly makes sure that watering helps plants and not weeds.
- Prioritise young plants and seedlings – more established plants will survive longer periods without water.
- Add water retaining crystals or gel to your containers and hanging baskets to keep in moisture.
- When growing thirsty vegetables, like courgettes, create a reservoir next to each plant – using a =plastic bottle cut in in half, with the top half buried in the soil. Fill the bottle and allow to drain into the root system.
- Don’t waste water on paths and patios.
Long term solutions to Saving Water:
- Drip Irrigation systems are an effective way of saving water, as water is efficiently directed to the plants root system.
- Improving your soil can help save water, adding mulch or compost can help stop moisture from evaporating.
- Install a water butt – not only is rainwater the perfect PH for your plants, but this will save you money and keep your water usage low.
- Design and plan a garden inspired by the Mediterranean, where many drought tolerant plants, rockeries and pots can be used to create a wonderful outdoor and natural space without very thirsty plants.
Saving water while keeping your lawn healthy
Lawns can usually be the thirstiest part of a garden, but there are a few easy steps you can take to cut the amount of water your lawn needs:
- Try letting the grass grow longer in dry spells to help retain moisture in the soil.
- If you must water, try soaking the lawn more infrequently as this will encourage the roots to grow deeper in their search for water.
- When re-doing lawn or reseeding, look for drought resistant grass varieties.
- Brown lawn does not mean it is dead and will usually recover when the rainfall improves.
- if you’re looking to re-do your lawn or re-seed part of it, choose grass varieties that are better suited to dry conditions like fescue grass or smooth-stalked meadow grass.
Drought-tolerant plants have evolved structures that help them survive periods without water, so planting a few of these in your garden means using less water. There are plenty of different types of drought-tolerant plants, but here are a few suggestions:
These drought-resistant plants will look good in any garden:
- Lambs ears
- Hardy geraniums
- Various alpines
- Nepeta (catmint)
- Succulents (Various)
- Eryngium (sea holly)