Practical Tips for Saving Water in Your Garden

Weather extremes are becoming more common in the UK, from record temperatures and droughts, to heavy downpours, you never know what the summer will throw at us. By saving water in your garden, you can save time and money, and in the event of a hose pipe ban, keep your plants alive.

Capture rainwater

Installing water butts on every rainwater downpipe in your garden, will allow you to capture as much water as possible when it rains. Water butts come in all shapes and sizes, and you can even use old IBC tanks. Just make sure they haven’t contained anything toxic in them.


Mulching around the base of your plants with either home-made compost or bark can help reduce water loss and keep weeds at bay. This will also help add nutrients back into the soil, and as the worms break it down, improve the soil structure.

Water the roots, not the foliage

Installing drip or seep hoses around the base of the plants, will allow you to supply water direct to the roots. This will save you time and money and a great way to water large areas.

Time of day

If you can avoid it, avoid watering in the heat of the day as the water will quickly evaporate. The best time to water is first thing in the morning before the temperatures start to rise. This will allow the water to soak into the soil, giving your plants plenty of water throughout the day. If watering in the morning is not possible, many gardeners will water late evening.

Water less often

By watering less often, your plants will develop deeper and strong root systems as they search for water. A good soaking once a week is better than a little water everyday.

Utilize shade and windbreaks

Planting trees, shrubs, or installing trellises can provide shade and wind protection for your garden, reducing water loss through evaporation and transpiration. Additionally, shading can help cool the surrounding air, reducing the need to water as often.

Collect and reuse household water

Use the water from your showers, baths and even washing up bowl to water the garden. This greywater can provide a valuable source of water for your plants.

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