Our friend Ade Sellars is sharing his top tips for saving water this summer, over a two part blog. Look out for part two out soon!
For years there have been warnings about climate change, on what we need to do to protect and sustain this precious planet. Sticking our head in the sand is no longer an option, this has consequences for everyone and everything.
For gardeners, people known for working with nature, it may feel all doom and gloom. But this can be a positive moment where we have the opportunity to re-think some of our practices, find sustainable answers and move forward as a collective, ensuring our treasured green spaces have a glorious future. So, with extreme weather patterns and soaring temperature, what can we do to ensure plants continue to thrive through the driest of summers?
I always think, you can never have too many water butts. With so much choice on the market, they can be discreet or as brash as you want, and you don’t have to spend a fortune to own one. Used containers can be bought cheaply on eBay, gardening forums or given away for free on allotments by fellow allotmenteers. Even watering cans, buckets and suspended tarpaulin can be made to collect rainfall. Sometimes, we just need to think outside the box and be a little more ‘MacGyver’ in our efforts.
With several water butts dotted around both my kitchen garden and garden, I also own a livestock cattle trough, which quickly fills up during rainfall. Once we hit a hot spell, I cover it over with tarpaulin, unless I’m watering or exposing it to rainfall, to prevent water evaporation. If you have the space, and bit of a budget, you could invest in an IBC container or an old, reclaimed steel water tank. In recent years, I’m seeing more of these on allotments, standing proud protecting their priceless cargo through all weathers.
As long as it doesn’t contain bleach or salt, reusing dishwater and bathwater is an excellent way to keep costs down and plants hydrated. More info on how to use here
Of course, it’s just not plant life than can suffer during a heatwave, wildlife too. So, water flowering plants. If a healthy plant is producing nectar, then garden pollinators will benefit and so will both growing flowers and veggies. It keeps the garden circle strong and life within your borders happy.
I’ll be back with more water saving tips in part 2
I’m Ade Sellars the Good Life Gardener, and I’m a gardener, presenter, writer and content producer, with a passion for growing my own food in my kitchen garden. As well as running my own gardening business, I write for magazines, produce tailored video content for gardening brands, flower shows and outdoor events and I regularly deliver talks and demonstrations around the country.
I co-write the award-winning gardening and food blog, Agents of Field, with my wife Sophie; you can follow our adventures on Twitter and Instagram, or by subscribing to our blog.