Grow better plants while saving water
Your plants will thrive in the right conditions, and you'll save on watering too!
Use peat-free compost
Peat is better left in the ground to store carbon and protect biodiversity. Find out how changing to peat-free compost may need a change in how you water.
Train your plants to be drought athletes
Keeping your plants really well watered all of the time just encourages them to need more water. Reduce the amount of water you use, without causing your plants to wilt, and you’ll train them to be drought athletes.
Protect plants from the heat
You can put up a sunshade over your plants, move containers into a shadier spot, push containers together so they shade each other slightly, or throw a light fabric over them.
Use a water butt
Rain water is great for your garden as it is softer, contains nitrates, and has less salts and chemicals than tap water. The average roof collects 85,000 litres of rain a year, enough to fill a water butt 450 times!
Big plants keep your garden cool
Trees, shrubs and hedges cool the garden and are the least likely to need watering themselves.
Make an olla
A terracotta olla (spanish for pot) is an ancient way of storing water in the soil for plants to absorb.
Water your plants in the morning
The morning is the best time for watering because that’s when your plants and soil are ready to take in water
Use a watering can instead of a hose
A hose can use enough water to fill twelve baths every hour! So use a watering can when you can. Garden sprinklers and hosepipes left running can use between 500 and 1,000 litres of water an hour.
Think of your soil as a reservoir
To help get a better feel for the amount of water needed for your plants, think of your soil like a reservoir.
Make your own compost to keep your soil moist
Used as mulch, compost helps soil retain more moisture by shading and cooling the roots, and helping the rain get in.
Stop watering your lawn
Wait for the rain to water your lawn. It’s ok to let your grass go brown during dry spells. It will bounce back as soon as it rains again.
Top tips video
5 top tips to save water and grow better plants with Janet Manning, a leading horticultural scientist.
Gardening advice video
Janet Manning, a leading horticultural scientist, covers topics such as how much watering plants need and easy ways to use water butts.