With severe drought affecting many parts of the country, it’s important to become more water-wise at home. One of the ways that we often use more water than we need is in our home gardens. In fact, nearly half of the water used to irrigate our lawns or water our vegetable gardens is lost to evaporation according to the EPA. But by adopting water-saving strategies at home we can both conserve water and save money. Here are our top tips on how to save water in your home garden.
Landscape with drought-resistant plants
One of the easiest things you can do to save water in your garden is to plant drought-resistant plants. These types of plants are conditioned to thrive in drier situations once they have been established. There are many kinds of drought-resistant plants you can choose from, including trees, shrubs, perennials, and annuals. Choose those that are appropriate for your environment and USDA Zone.
Choose native plants
In addition to using drought-resistant plants, you can also save water by landscaping with native plants. These are plants that are native to your area and have become accustomed to the weather patterns that exist there. Native plants will require much less water than other varieties and will also provide food and shelter for pollinators. Consider digging up some of your thirsty lawn and replacing it with native alternatives.
Group similar plants together
Another strategy that can help you save water – and labor – is grouping plants together that have the same water needs. This way, you don’t need to necessarily water the entire garden, you can concentrate just on the areas that need a little extra. You’ll save water by not watering plants that don’t need it.
Another easy way to conserve water in your garden is to apply mulch to garden beds. This can be in the form of compost, wood chips, or straw, among other things. Mulch helps to keep moisture from evaporating from the soil. It also has the added benefit of inhibiting the growth of weeds. Organic mulches can also add nutrients to your soil so you can rely less on fertilizers.
Plant close together
Planting close together can also help you save water, especially in your vegetable garden. When you plant close together, the plants give each other shade, helping to ease evaporation. It also means you can grow more produce in a smaller space, which is great for those with small gardens.
Time your watering
In periods where you don’t get any rainfall for several days or even weeks, supplemental watering can be necessary. But watering at the right time is essential. Don’t water in the middle of the day. Watering during the sunniest, hottest parts of the day means more of your water will be lost to evaporation. Instead, water in the early morning between 5 am and 9 am.
Finally, consider using greywater to water your garden. Greywater is water that has been used and isn’t appropriate to drink. But most greywater is perfectly safe to water plants. Collect water from baths and showers and use it to give your beloved plants a drink when they need it.
Compliments of Virtual Results