Saving Water in the Garden

This is a HOT week. Probably every day will be over 100 degrees. Hot weather, drought, expensive water- all reasons to pay attention to how you water your garden. You want to make every drop count.

First, you should watch what happens when you are watering. I say this to those people who do not hand water, but have their plants on a timer or automatic system. You may well be sending a lot of water down the street or into an area that does not need water. You may be making weeds by not paying attention to your water. You want to make sure when you are watering, you are watering the plants, not the street, gutters or the fallow area nearby.

Overhead sprinkling provides excellent coverage for plants, but it also wastes a lot of water. It wastes water through evaporation and by watering an entire area. If you are watering your lawn, you need that coverage. If you are watering a flower bed or vegetable garden, you don’t need the same amount of coverage. And watering everything uses a lot of water and waters the thirsty weeds.

Here is an interesting way to plant vegetables to keep the water on the plant and not any where else.

Plant raised up

Planting in reservoirs

Hopefully, you can see what is going on in the photo. The plant is in a raised area surrounded by grass clippings to keep the soil from washing away. By making a plant reservoir, when the gardener hand waters, all the water is going to the plant. It is not spreading out and watering weed seeds or running off into another area. The plant is raised about 12 inches, which also helps the soil to warm up earlier in the spring.

No excess water, no watering weed seeds, and you can be assured the plant is getting water!

Growing on a hill or an incline can present problems with watering, try building up small soil dams around your plants so the water can pool around the plant stem and soak in rather than run off to another area.

Plant , raised soil, trellis

Plant in a reservoir

Posted By

Vicki

I love gardening and when it comes to vegetables, organic gardening is important to me. I am an Advanced Master Gardener with the University of Idaho, and my favorite garden activity is pruning. When I'm not cutting down plants, you can find me shooting photos on my Canon DSLR or out smashing overheads on the tennis courts.


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2 Comments

  1. Sam

    you said “100 degrees” is it correct or by mistake ? where do you live ? South Africa?
    You are right automation is good but manual is better when it comes to watering the plants, coz your automation never knows which plant needs how much water and when. it can be done manually better.

    • Thanks for reading! Yes, we often have 100 degree (Fahrenheit) temperatures here in the summer in SW Idaho. Usually several days in a row!

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