We’ve all been sweltering in the heat wave this week! Understandably we’ve been visiting the office water cooler more often during the day to replenish all the water we’ve lost, but it’s not only our bodies that suffer during these extreme times – our gardens are also worse off for it. And if one considers that heat waves and drought are very much part of our new ‘normal’, then we need to give some thought to better planning, going forward.
Here are a few tips to help with the next heat wave and with the increasing pressure of saving water:
Reduce Lawn Size
Yes it’s obvious, but unless you already have a postage stamp sized lawn, you might want to consider reducing your lawn size. Replacing or breaking up vast expanses of green grass with hard landscaping like stone pathways, a beautiful gazebo or even a super-sized sandbox if you have little ones are all ways of using less water; because let’s be honest, as much as we all love grand expanses of green grass, nothing looks worse than grand expanses of yellow grass.
Water More Effectively
Yes your garden needs water, but it benefits more from a deep watering once or twice a week than it does from a light wetting more frequently – remember that shallow watering leads to shallow root systems all of which reduces the plants vigor and longevity. And it goes without saying that you need to water either early morning or late evening to avoid unnecessary evaporation during the warmer hours.
Mulch More Efficiently
Cover your garden with mulch at least twice a year, it helps your garden retain moisture for longer which means you’ll need to water less frequently. Mulch is typically organic matter which can take the shape of leaves, grass clippings, peat moss, bark chips or straw, to name but a few. Using your lawn cuttings is one of the better ideas, because not only will it help your garden remain wet for longer, but it also means less garden refuge to take away.
So here’s to keeping not only ourselves cool and hydrated during these dreaded heat waves, but to keeping our gardens beautiful too!