Saving Water in the Garden

With hosepipe bans in place or on their way, it is important to ensure that what little water there is, is used wisely in the garden.

Watering the Garden

Ideas on how to Save Water in the Garden

Cutting down on watering not only saves water but also saves precious time spend walking around with a watering can.

To reduce the amount of water usage in the garden you can:

  • Install one or more water butts to collect rain water.
  • Water in the evening or at dusk, as this helps to prevent losses due to evaporation.
  • Water the priority areas of the garden only. Don't waste water by watering the whole garden, but concentrate on watering only those plants that need it most. For example, general purpose lawns can recover quite well from dry conditions so should not need watering. Read more...
  • Whenever possible use a watering can rather than a hosepipe so that watering is targeted at the plants that really need it.
  • Alternatively, lay a seep hose (connected to a pressure reducing valve), around the base of the plants so that a slow and steady supply of water is provided over a longer period. This also ensures that water is only directed at the soil and not wasted on the leaves and foliage.
  • If the soil is extremely dry, break-up the surface with a small rake, cultivator or hoe first to enable the water to penetrate down and not just run off the surface.
  • When watering larger plants, like trees and shrubs, build-up a small rim of soil around the plant (forming a small basin), so that water is held in place around the plant and can soak directly down to the roots. This is especially useful on sloping sites, where it will prevent water from simply running off.
  • If possible recycle 'grey water' from washing or bathing for use on the flower garden. However, recycled water must be used with care in the garden and should not be used on fruit and vegetables, where there is a risk of contamination. Also do not use water containing strong detergents, chemicals or water softeners as this may kill the plants, e.g. do NOT use waste water from washing machines or dishwashers etc.

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