How Do I… Keep My Garden Alive in a Drought?

How Do I… Keep My Garden Alive in a Drought?

1. Water early

Watering plants earlier in the morning (before 7am) will reduce evaporation in the heat of the day and give plants the most benefits throughout the day.

2. Be efficient

When watering with a bucket or watering can (before 10am or after 4pm), make sure you water directly on the root zone at the stem of the plant. It’s also important to water plants deeply and less often as it helps strengthen water uptake and teaches plants to expect less water.

3. Avoid watering foliage

Watering a plant’s root zone instead of its foliage not only helps reduce the evaporation of water, it also helps prevent pests and diseases.

4. Install drip irrigation and a timer tap

While a competent DIYer can install a drip-irrigation system for about $50 for a 1 x 2-metre garden bed, it pays to hire a professional like FOX for best results.

Installing a timer tap on your drip-irrigation system will ensure efficient watering at designated times – meaning no wasted water (or money) and consistent watering for healthy plants.

5. Add a health tonic for plants

Adding a seaweed solution to your watering can or bucket will help plants retain water and keep them hydrated for longer. As a guide, you’ll need to use about a capful (20 to 30 millilitres) of seaweed solution for every nine litres of water.

6. Keep water in the soil

Once your soil is nice and moist, the key is to keep that moisture in the root zone where your plants need it. Water crystals expand to hundreds of times their size when they come in contact with water, forming a water-holding gel that will help your plants withstand dry periods. Once you’ve applied the water crystals to your garden, they will last several years before they biodegrade.

You could also use a drought shield, which creates a flexible polymer film over foliage, preventing water transpiration and loss by up to 50 percent so you can water less often.

7. Lay mulch

Mulching is an essential step for any garden – not only does it finish everything off visually, it’s vital for keeping your soil moist and cool. Mulch will help your garden get the most out of every drop of water, with natural wetting agents providing increased holding capacity.

8. Choose drought-resistant plants

Select plants that can thrive with limited water for your garden – for example bottlebrush, frangipani and iris.

This article thanks to Houzz

 

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