Whether you’re making a last ditch effort to revive your slightly sorry looking garden, or you’re prepping for the heatwave ahead, here are a few tips on gardening in hot weather.
We may get seriously hot weather (and by hot weather, I mean anything about 25 degrees for us Brits) for around a month every year. But even in this short space of time, it’s essential to be prepared when it comes to looking after your garden. Only a handful of people have a plan for gardening in hot weather, so I’m here to raise awareness! Too much hot weather and not enough care saps the life out of your plants – so don’t neglect them!
If you have potted plants, move them to a shaded area so that they’re at least out of the harsh midday sun. If they’re in large pots that can’t be moved, or your also want to protect beds, make use of shade netting around your garden. It may look a little ugly, but you’ll probably only need it for a few days before the weather goes back to normal.
Tip: If you don’t want to buy shade netting, you can use old net curtains!
Get yourself a Tree Nanny
Your trees need water too! The Tree Nanny, available from QVC, alerts you as to when your tree needs watering, helps prevent overwatering, and features a very clever funnel, tube and sensor filling system.
Make the most of the cool evenings
Evenings are the best time to water your garden. It’s been a longstanding rule that you shouldn’t water your garden in midday sun as it may cause leaf burn (although scientists have claimed to disprove this), but there’s another reason. Watering your garden in the afternoon heat may cause plants to expect water during the hottest times of the day, meaning they’re less likely to retain water during this time if you then forget to water them the next afternoon. Thus, expect a wilting garden.
Furthermore, water evaporates quicker in heat, resulting in a waste of water and energy. So instead, water your garden in the cooler temperatures of the evening, and not only will your plants will hold onto the water during the day, you’ll also make the process more efficient.
Lay down some mulch
Pots, borders and beds will benefit from a layer of bark or compost. This keeps the moisture in the soil whilst at the same time protecting roots from the burning sun.
Prepare for a hosepipe ban
Hosepipe bans mean you can’t use a hosepipe (obviously), but you can water your garden with a watering can. Make sure you’re prepared for these kind of restrictions with a good watering can and, even better, by using recycled water.
Harvesting rain water in a water butt is ideal. But there are also other ways to recycle. Think bath water, kettle water and water you’ve used to boil potatoes or eggs (as long as you haven’t put salt in it) – once cooled down, use it to hydrate your plants. Not only will this save you money on your water bill, but it’ll also help to alleviate the stress on the water supply in your area.
Once the ban is over, bag yourself a Pure Rain Oxygen Infusing Plant Watering Handheld Gun. This gadget slots onto your hosepipe and showers your plants with highly oxygenated water, reducing your water usage by up to 30%!
Keep an eye on new or recently moved plants
If you’re expecting a heatwave, you shouldn’t really be planting anything new, or making a lot of changes to the plants in your garden. However, if it’s too late, you should make sure you pay special attention to new or recently moved plants, as they may not react well to the change in environment on top of the spike in temperature.
Try and keep them in the shade, and make sure they don’t dry out! Use Automatic Watering Globes to help prevent underwatering – these handy globes are available in packs of four from QVC and are great for forgetful gardeners.
Do you have any more helpful tips for garning in hot weather? Tell me in the comment section below!