10 Smart Watering Tips for Your Vegetable Garden

Water – it’s a precious resource we’d do well to use wisely,but getting smart with the way we splosh water about the garden isn’t just about conserving it – it’s also good old-fashioned common sense. it will save you a lot of time and money, and your plants will be all the better for it -a win-win scenario then!

So in this video we’re going to share 10 simple tips to help you save water in the garden. Watering by hand means you can be more selective about which plants you water. Only water if they really need it. If you’re not sure, you can check the soil moisture at root level -if it’s cool and damp,
just move on.

When you water makes a big difference to how much moisture your plants take up. Watering early in the morning gives crops time to absorb
the moisture before it evaporates in the heat of the day. Any water that gets on the foliage will also have enough time to dry off before nightfall, minimizing the risk from slugs and fungal diseases. If you’re watering by hand, be sure to aim the flow of water at the base of plants where it’s needed, so that every drop counts.

This will also keep foliage dry. A really good soaking every now and then is better than little and often and will encourage a more extensive root system.

Sunken plastic pots make excellent miniature reservoirs. Sink them up to the rim next to thirsty plants such as squash, then water into the pot. The pot will hold the water so it seeps gradually into the soil rather than running off on the surface. You could also use upturned bottles with the
cap removed and the bottom cut off. If you want to automate watering, opt for drip irrigation or leaky hoses over sprinklers.

These types of irrigation deliver water closer to the ground so that less is wasted. Place your setup on a timer, and override it if it’s been raining or if rain is due. Keep an eye on the weather forecast.

Clay pots, such as terracotta pots, are highly porous. In essence, this means they suck moisture out of the potting soil while other pots, like those made of metal, heat up very quickly,accelerating moisture loss from the root zone. So go for plastic or glazed pots instead.

You can always hide ugly pots within a more decorative metal or terracotta outer pot. Group pots together to cast shade at root level and slow evaporation further. Soils that are rich in organic matter absorb moisture more easily, and hang on to it ,so add well rotted compost or manure to beds whenever you get the chance. Add thinner layers in summer so you can fork it in and replant,then thicker layers over winter.

Laying mulches over bare soil dramatically slows evaporation. You can use landscape fabrics on the ground or pebbles and stones on pots. The best mulches are of well-rotted organic matter such as compost which will also help to feed the plants as they grow.

Lay them at least 2 inches thick onto moist soil. Coarser mulches such as bark chippings allow rain water to drain through more easily,while grass clippings offer a ready supply of mulching material. Keep mulches topped up throughout summer.

Collecting rainwater not only saves precious drinking water, it’s also better for your plants. Collect water off your roof, greenhouse and shed into water barrels close to where you’ll most need the water. Multiple barrels can be linked together to store even more rainwater.

Weeds among your vegetables mean competition for soil moisture, so keep on top of them. Annual weeds can just be hoed off and left on the soil surface,but take the time to dig out the roots of more pernicious perennials such as bindweed or ground elder.

Water does wonders in the garden, giving us luscious plants and of course exceptional produce!I hope we’ve given you a few ideas
that you can use in your own garden. As ever, if you’ve got any water-saving tips, please do share them.

We’d especially love to hear from gardeners in water-stressed regions. How do you make every last drop count?You can let us know by posting a comment below this article. Now, if you’ve enjoyed this article , make
sure you’re subscribed to the GardeningForFun.com updates newsletter. We’ll be bringing you lots of timely tips over the coming months,so there’s plenty to look forward to. I’ll catch you next time.



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