10 Ways to Conserve Water in Your Garden
- Mulch the soil surface with materials such as leaf mould, grass clippings, sheets of newspaper, straw, or composted bark chippings, which will all help to reduce moisture loss and suppress weeds. Apply when the soil is moist and has warmed up and the plants are established. Water thoroughly if soil is dry before laying down the mulch.
- Remove weeds; they will be in competition for water resources with the plants/vegetables you want to grow.
- Windbreaks are good for sheltering plants from drying winds.
- Shade seedlings in hot weather.
- Avoid digging as this increases water loss from the soil, particularly in dry hot weather.
- Increase the water-holding capacity of the soil by digging in organic matter such as compost or leaf mould. Using organic matter as a mulch will reduce water run-off after rainfall.
- Watering early morning and late afternoon will reduce loss of water through evaporation.
- Apply water directly to the soil, avoiding wetting the leaves.
- Collect as much rainwater as possible by using water butts.
10. Soak plants well if you are watering. Check that the water has penetrated down into the soil, not just the surface layers.