We all know that plants need water to help them grow, but some ways of sating their thirst are better than others. Here are five top tips we’ve discovered while applying the wet stuff…
Play misty for me
Tender young seedlings grown indoors don’t care much for great dollops of water sloshing over their delicate frames. And one slip of the watering can can easily cause a muddy overflow onto your furniture or floor. So fine tune the wetness with a mist spray. This will also come in handy for hothouse veg such as chillis who’ll be grateful for some misty air on their leaves to remind them of their native, hotter climates.
Get it. Mist sprays are cheap enough, but for a free one recycle household detergent spray bottles – just make sure to thoroughly scrub them first.
Down down deeper and down
For some exceptionally thirsty plants, such as squash, getting water directly to their roots can be hugely beneficial. Not only is a drop on the leaf a wasted drop, but water swilling around the base of the plant can cause rotting. So sink a funnel device next to the roots and pour water directly into the top to direct it to where it’s needed most
Get it. The sawn off tops of pop bottles make ideal funnels. You can work out which end goes into the ground…
A hard rain’s gonna fall
Rain is a precious commodity, so it’s well worth collecting as much as you can to use on your garden during dry spells. Not only will it save you on water bills and give you a smug glow of satisfaction during a drought, but your plants also prefer nature’s gift to the water company’s supply. Install water butts and leave buckets outside to collect as much as possible.
Get it. Water butts are available from most good garden centres. It’s also worth checking to see if your local council offer a discount.
All night long
There is much debate about what time of day is best for watering plants. The notion of not watering during high sun to prevent leaves burning is a load of old cobblers, but the hottest part of the day will cause the most water to evaporate before getting to the roots. So an evening watering is best to allow the plants to guzzle throughout the night.
Happiness is a wet gun
We’ve just discovered the benefits of a hose pipe gun attachment. Without it the hose is pretty much on full time or off full time, pumping out loads of water with just a varying spread of water to select. With a gun, besides parading around the garden like a soggy outlaw, you’re able to shoot out small amounts of water with a quick squeeze of the trigger, and you get to choose from a range of great delivery settings. These include a super fine mist (perfect for the greenhouse) to a blitzing jet ideal for scrubbing down the shed. Ours also has a setting that makes foamy emissions, but we’re not entirely sure what that’s for.
Get it. Try a specialist garden watering supplier (we got ours from www.swelluk.com – check it out here)
Note: Swell UK have kindly supplied products to us for review before, so we asked them if they would mind sending a Hozelock gun attachment for this feature.