After two years of very dry winters leaving reservoirs, aquifers and rivers below normal levels, seven water companies have had no choice but to impose water restrictions with a hosepipe ban. These water companies are Southern Water, South East Water, Thames Water, Anglian Water, Sutton and East Surrey, Veolia Central and Veolia.
The restrictions of a hosepipe ban are as followed;
- Watering a garden using a hosepipe
- Cleaning a private motor-vehicle using a hosepipe
- Watering plants on domestic or other non-commercial premises using a hosepipe
- Filling or maintaining a domestic swimming or paddlingpool
- Cleaning a private leisure boat with a hosepipe
- Drawing water, using a hosepipe, for domestic recreational use
- Filling or maintaining a domestic pond using a hosepipe
- Filling or maintaining an ornamental fountain
- Cleaning walls or windows of domestic premises using a hosepipe
- Cleaning paths and patios using a hosepipe
- Cleaning other artificial outdoor surfaces using a hosepipe
Although there are restrictions in place, here are 9 tips to keep your garden looking as good as last year with careful watering;
- Watering at the base of the plant is more efficient. Some gardeners scrape trenches around plants so the water doesn’t run away.
- Water at the right time – evening and very early morning before the sun is up are ideal.
- Saving water should be a no-brainer. That means using water butts connected to gutters on a shed or greenhouse to collect rainwater.
- You are still allowed to run a hosepipe off your own saved water supply. If you do, a drip hose or soaker is the best way to water your beds.
- Recycle water, use washing up water or old bottled water for your plants.
- Certain plants are better at retaining water – those with silver and pale grey narrow foliage such as Lavender, Rosemay, Perovskia as well as conifers and grasses.
- Plant in a waterwise way – plant closely together to get a good root system going.
- Place mulch on the bed to help preserve water. If you can break up the surface with a hoe first.
- A good soaking every three to four days is much better than a light sprinkle every day.