Conserving Water in the Garden
Water conservation is important since water is becoming an increasingly limited resource. Not only is it good for the environment to conserve water, but it can help trim down your water bill quite a bit. An added benefit is that you can save money for that vacation you've wanted to go on. Use these guidelines to help keep your garden looking green in a water shortage.
- Mulch. Add 2 inches of groundcover to your plant beds and that will help conserve water. Mulching lowers the ground temperature of the soil and helps to reduce evaporation greatly. Not only does mulching help with water conservation but you get the added bonus of weed and erosion control. What a deal!
- Plant native plants. Picking plants that are indigenous of your local community will help conserve water because they have already adapted to the climate. They often need little to no watering or care and many of them are still really beautiful.
- Manage your watering. Not only do you want to water your garden in the early morning or late evening to help reduce evaporation as much as possible, but you want to use a method of watering that won't waste water. The best thing to do is to use a trigger nozzle or a soaker hose to do the job when doing specific areas of your garden. The worst way to water a garden is to stand there and spray water lightly over the garden; you need to get the water to the roots. If you have to use a sprinkler, lay out a Frisbee, upside down, and when Frisbee fills with water, turn off the sprinkler. Sprinklers soak through the soil and grass a lot quicker than most people think and that ends up wasting a lot of water.
- Weed. Weeds give your plants competition for water, so the fewer weeds you have, the more water your plants will get. So make sure to weed often. Be careful when weeding, however, so as not to disrupt the soil too much. Any stirring of the soil increases moisture loss.
- Reduce lawn maintenance. Mow higher and less often as you normally do, this will help to reduce the amount of energy put into lawn growth. Don't pick up your clippings, they will help to act as a type of mulch and keep moisture in.
Using these tips will dramatically increase your conservation of water, so go ahead and test them out. You won't regret it.
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