As a gardener, you’re probably concerned about all the water you use on your garden and lawn. It’s pretty understandable considering the fact that you lose money every time you turn the tap on. Don't worry, though — we've laid out a few creative water-saving options to help you reduce the cost of that monthly water bill.
A rain barrel might be something you’ve already considered. They allow you to capture the liquid gold that falls out of the sky and use it in your very own garden. Store-bought rain barrels come in a variety of styles. Some are brown and blend in with the outdoors while others have been painted into artworks of their own.
The problem for some is that these barrels can sometimes take up a lot of space or not work where they’re intended to, such as under a downspout. Luckily, you can make your own rain barrels out of smaller containers. Even just placing a large bowl on your patio during a rainstorm can benefit your yard. If you’d rather make a container that will sit outside for a more extended period of time, consider placing a screen filter on top of it to help filter out bugs and debris.
You can also save water by growing a rain garden. Rain gardens are typically planted in holes or trenches to act as places for rainwater runoff to collect in. Some people create rain gardens around the perimeter of their homes, both around the driveway and in the places where rain comes off of the roof. Not only does this help with runoff, but it may also qualify you for some credits on your local sewage bill. Be sure to check with your utility provider to find out for sure.
Utilize Drought-Efficient Plants
Another creative way to conserve water is to employ drought-resistant plants and flowers in your garden. They typically don’t need as much water as other plants, and they can really cut down the amount of time you spend watering.
You may not realize it, but you could be wasting more water in your home than you are in your garden. When you rinse your fruits and veggies, what do you do with the water? Chances are it probably just swirls down the drain. Conserving that water in a bowl and using it on your plants is a great way to cut down on waste.
The same is true with the water you use to boil pasta and cook other foods. You probably don’t think twice about dumping that water into the sink, but you should be reserving it for your plants!
How about when you drop an ice cube on the floor or have ice left in your glass? Those cubes typically get left in the sink to melt. This is yet another lost opportunity for your garden.
In some instances, you can even think outside of the box. What about the water that collects in your dehumidifier? It’s not safe to drink, but it’s safe to use on your plants.
Get a Timer
Some people just leave their sprinklers running to give their lawn and garden a nice soaking. The problem is that while they probably intend to turn them off after a short while, they tend to leave them on for a lot longer than necessary. To prevent waste, invest in a simple egg timer, or put your sprinkler system itself on a timer. Alternatively, you can use an adjustable sprinkler to give your plants smaller, more water-efficient spritzes.
Mulching your garden doesn’t sound like something you can do to save water, but it’s actually very helpful for keeping your soil moist. The mulch acts as a natural barrier, keeping the water in the ground and preventing it from evaporating
Cloches and Tunnel Covers
Cloches and tunnel covers are typically thought of as things that help you extend your growing season because they protect your plants from extreme weather, but they can also be helpful for conserving water. Glass and plastic covers still allow sunlight to reach your plants, but they prevent the water in the soil from completely evaporating away. Any condensation that forms on the covers is also trapped inside of them. Since your covers need to be airtight for optimal results, it’s important to make sure you're not leaving them on your plants for too long.
You may dread the thought of opening your water bill every month because you make it a point to give your plants everything they need to stay healthy and strong. Just add some of these creative water-saving options into your routine, and you'll be sure to cut down on the amount of water you use.