As a Brit, a warm and sunny summer in the UK is one of our most desired, and often optimistic wishes for the year. However, when the baking heat does arrive, it doesn’t always just bring blue skies and sunshine. Rather, we’re left with uncomfortable night sleeps, a craving for ice-cream, and a nerving strain on our essential water supply. With the startling heights of 39°C on the horizon (!), we’ve devised a list of simple water saving tips for your gardening endeavours to ensure water is in plentiful supply throughout the summer. Being on the brink of the UK’s first-ever national heatwave emergency calls for all hands on deck to preserve our finite resources, as our dependency on water flows further than just our need to drink it. We wash in it, clean with it, feed our garden with it, and use it to produce everything from clothing to food.
Whilst there seems to be an abundance of water on Earth, a measly 0.3% of it is useable by humans. The other 99.7% is stored in oceans, soil, icebergs, and floating above us in the atmosphere. Therefore, it’s crucial we take every precaution to preserve each and every drop we can. So, follow our water saving gardening tips below and start living EvenGreener today.
1. Show your Lawn some Tough Love
Our lawns often appear as the most water-demanding part of our garden. Using a sprinkler to feed them can use as much water in one hour, as a family of four uses in a single day! To minimise the amount of water your lawn needs, there are a few simple steps you can follow:
- Growing your grass out longer than usual during dry spells can keep moisture locked in the soil.
- Don’t be tempted to frequently water your lawn. Even if it turns brown during warm, dry spells, it will quickly recover once the rain reappears.
- Irregular soakings of water will also help your lawn grow more resilient during future dry spells, as it will start to dig deeper in the ground in search of water.
2. Keep your Soil Nourished
Through the warmer summer months, your soil may appear dangerously dry at root level. To fix this, digging in a healthy supply of nourishing material will help enrich the soil and make it more absorbent and effective in retaining moisture during dry times. This can be done via nutritious, organic matter, such as compost, leaves, lawn clippings and animal manure.
3. Invest in a Water Butt
We couldn’t not bring this one up, could we? Installing a water butt via our extensive range can save up to 5,000 litres of water each year! Not only do water butts slash your water and energy bills, but the rainwater they catch is also much healthier and more preferable for your plants, as opposed to treated tap water.
We stock a diverse range of colours, sizes, and models to accommodate for all homes and gardens. Shop the range here to find the best suited for you.
Browse our water butts collection here.
4. Water with Caution
When watering your plants, try using a watering can as opposed to a hose or sprinkler, as this is a much more efficient water saving method. Living in the UK, we’re no stranger to rain, so don’t worry about watering your lawn too intensely through the drier spells we’re having, it will soon bounce back to its luscious greenery given the chance.
A great way to ensure your plants receive sufficient watering through the summer, is via our range of Irrigatia solar automatic watering systems. Using solar power, they detect the weather and alter watering conditions accordingly, diligently feeding your garden to conserve water within your home.
Available in C12 and C24 sizes, the systems are quick and easy to install, saving you money from the second they’re up and running! Shop the range here.
Take a look at our Irrigatia Solar Watering Systems here.
5. Cut down on Food Waste
It requires a vast amount of water to accommodate for the meat and dairy industry, and to produce our cereal, fruit, and other foods. Therefore, it’s vital we start taking bigger steps in minimising food waste to ensure the water required for production is not squandered, not only for the sake of saving precious money in the midst of a financial crisis, but also for our planet’s health (gloomy, we know!).
Amazingly, around 7 million tonnes of food and drink is wasted each year in the UK, and even more staggering, over half of this amount could be eaten.
Here at EvenGreener, we’re all about providing solutions to problems. So, fortunately, our wide range of composters are the perfect answer to depositing your leftover food scraps to minimise waste, and divert food being sent to landfill, where it slowly decays anaerobically to emit harmful greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
Ranging from the UK’s best-selling Blackwall Compost Converter, to the innovative Subpod unifying with nature, to the strong and sturdy HotBin - which stomachs all matters of food waste, including bones and carcasses - we have all your composting needs covered. View our range here.
6. Prioritise Young Plants and Seedlings
Older, more established plants will be more resilient in withstanding longer periods of time with little or no water. Similarly, leaving plants and shrubs to dry out until they slightly start to wilt will cause them no harm. Watering too often however, will cause shallow rooting, and weaken the plant.
7. Invest in Water Retaining Crystals
Water retaining crystals quickly absorb hundreds of times their own volume of water, doubling up as a water reservoir to feed and enrich plant roots, particularly in the heat and threat of draught we’re currently in. They can be used in growbags, or used in the garden for new trees, plants, and shrubs to minimise water loss during watering.
8. Plan ahead with your Gardening
In the midst of this heatwave, it’s important the animals are cared for too. Rather than watering your lawn, leaving a container or bowl of water for birds to drink and bathe in is just what they’ll need to cope with this heat. Additionally, catering for bees and other insects via a saucer or bowl with water and stones in will keep your garden’s ecosystem thriving.
Further, watering your outdoor plants in the early morning or later in the evening is the ideal time to stop water from being evaporated in the midday heat. Take care to water the soil so the liquid and goodness goes straight to the plant’s roots.
9. Use Greywater in the Garden
‘Greywater’ is any water that has been left over from the home, such as from the shower, the sink, laundry water, but excludes toilet water. Greywater from baths and showers can be used to water non-edible plants in your garden. Just make sure the water has completely cooled beforehand, and to not pour it straight onto foliage.
10. Plant Draught-Resistant Trees and Plants
With a bit of research, you can find some amazing trees and plants that require little to no irrigation, all whilst storing carbon and releasing fresh oxygen into your garden too. Flowers such as Geums, Anchusa azurea, and Bearded irises are just a few of our favourite drought-tolerant plants.
Similarly, adding a layer of mulch (such as compost or wood chips) around your trees and plants will also help slow the evaporation of moisture within your garden to conserve more water and stop the surface from drying out.
So, there’s our top 10 tips for minimising water wastage in your garden throughout this summer’s heatwave. Saving water is becoming an even more important necessity in everybody’s lifestyle, as changing weather patterns have “awarded” us with the hottest summers on record in recent years. However, if habits and ways of living do not change, this will be the coldest summer for years to come. Start saving water now, and shop our range of products to combat climate change and start living EvenGreener today.