Saving water in your landscape doesn’t have to be difficult or time-consuming. Many of the most effective steps you can take to lower your water bills and protect your community’s water supply are simple and easy. Here are some suggestions that are either one-time investments in water-saving devices that you can make yourself or that someone else can install for you, or simple habit changes. We’ll tell you how to save water in your yard!
Table of Contents
- Save water in the garden – right time to water the garden.
- Reduce water consumption in the garden – take care of the soil
- Do without lawn sprinklers
- Save water in the garden – mow high
- Grow water saving plants
- Combine plants with similar water needs in groups
- Rain barrel to save water in the garden
- Ways to conserve and reuse water
- Do not over water
- Saving water in the garden with bead hose
Saving water in the garden – the right time to water the garden
The ideal time to water is early morning. Temperatures are cooler and there is usually less wind blowing, which reduces evaporation. It also gives plants a chance to dry off quickly. Leaves that stay wet all night are more susceptible to disease.
Reduce water use in the garden – take care of the soil
Take care of your soil in the garden so you can conserve water. You can take the following steps: Adding organic matter, for example, improves soil structure and helps retain moisture in the soil. Add water-retaining granules or gel to compost or use compost , already mixed with it, to use in hanging baskets and containers.
A thick layer of mulch helps keep the root zone cool and moisture in the soil. Organic mulches such as wood chips and shredded bark also help enrich the soil with organic matter over time. Some mulches are better suited for certain applications than others, so choose carefully.
Refrain from using lawn sprinklers
Water in the root zone to minimize evaporation. Keeping water away from your plants’ leaves will also help control fungal diseases and prevent sunburn. A professionally designed irrigation system – drip irrigation, for example – is far better for proper water delivery than the simple sprinklers you can buy at the hardware store. It’s an investment that will pay for itself over time in lower water bills and healthier plants.
Save water in the garden – Mow it high.
Keeping your lawn at the recommended top limit (about 5 inches for most species) will shade the soil and prevent excessive evaporation.
Grow water-efficient plants
Choose drought-tolerant plants. Careful plant selection can make a big difference in water use. Many plants, such as white fir, yarrow and sage, are naturally adapted to thrive in low water conditions. Consult a local landscaper for advice on which species will do well in your area and on your property.
Species with low water needs will save you time and money in the garden. These include:
- Established or slow-growing plants
- Small plants
- Varieties with small or narrow leaves – narrow leaves lose less moisture through transpiration
- Gray or silver foliage
- Leathery, hairy or wavy leaves that usually require less moisture
For example, herbs like rosemary and thyme, with their small, delicate leaves, have lower water needs than basil, with its large ones. Native plants and succulents may be more suitable than some of the common landscape plants, so review your garden and make water-efficient choices.
Combine plants with similar water needs in groups
Find out about the characteristics of your planting site, such as sun and shade exposure, soil type and wind conditions. Make a plan to group plants with similar needs, such as the drought-tolerant plants.
Another tip for a drought-tolerant garden is to plant plants with higher water needs toward the house, where they are easy to water. Group more drought-tolerant plants at the outer edges of the garden area.
Rain barrel to conserve water in garden
Using rain barrels to collect rain that runs down your home’s downspouts can save you a lot of water over the course of the summer. While there are many models available for purchase, you can also build a rain barrel yourself and use the water for your garden and lawn.
Ways to save and reuse water
- Save your cooking water
When you steam or boil vegetables, save the water instead of dumping it down the sink. It contains many nutrients and, when cooled, is a free fertilizer for watering your plants.
- Reuse aquarium water
When you clean your aquarium, use the “old” water that is high in nitrogen and phosphorus for your plants.
It sounds simple, but more water is wasted by overwatering than for any other reason. If you water too much, you’re not just wasting a valuable resource. It’s also very bad for your plants. Too much moisture in the soil stresses your plants’ root systems and contributes to root rot and fungal and bacterial diseases.
Save water in the garden with Perl hose
Beaded hoses deliver water exactly where it’s needed without losing it to evaporation or wind. It connects to a standard garden hose and water seeps through thousands of tiny holes. The placement of the hose is important: usually the beaded hose is placed right next to the plants. Just make sure the water seeps into the established root zone of the plant.
Some people run the hose over the soil when needed, others bury it under the mulch and leave it there. Either is fine, but if you bury the hose, make sure you know where it is so you don’t accidentally damage it when digging or hoeing.