how to reorganize your garden to save water

The water scarcity that today affects entire regions in 43 countries will increase to such a scale that two thirds of the world’s population will live in constant water stress. The reserves of water which is the source of life are shrinking due to heavy handedness and environmental pollution. Being eco-responsible is becoming the slogan of many people: professional horticulturists and budding gardeners who grow their own vegetables. How to organize vegetable garden watering wisely to have a good harvest without wasting water?

Watering the vegetable garden as an unusual approach

If you’re one of those gardeners who want to save water through wise irrigation techniques, plant crops that don’t require a lot of water initially. Reorganization on this scale requires knowing which vegetables are adapted to drought conditions at a very basic cellular level. If for indoor plants, the solution is to make a self-watering pot or to opt for plants without watering, the irrigation of the garden is in question. Do you love gardening, but live in near-drought conditions? The heat wave has moved ahead of the summer and given the water shortage, you plan to reduce the vegetable garden watering. But even in extreme drought conditions, don’t give up on your growing plans altogether. By choosing the right, dry-weather-tolerant vegetables and making a clever garden plan, you can always grow a healthy harvest of beautiful vegetables that won’t skyrocket your water usage.

vegetable watering consider drought-tolerant vegetables economical irrigation

Before planting your first plant, consider drought-tolerant vegetables so vegetable garden watering is economical and does not suffer. They should be specially selected for their hardiness as those that thrive in hot, arid climates. These vegetable varieties develop deep root systems to counter both heat and low water levels. Many grow quickly, which also reduces their long-term water needs. Others that are normally thirsty come in drought resistant varieties. When buying seeds and plants suitable for dry gardening, look for labels stating that the plant likes warm temperatures and has low to moderate water needs.

watering vegetable garden buy seedlings start garden seeds

If you are in the middle of a drought year or anticipating a drier year, buy seedlings instead of starting your garden from seed. Visit a local nursery and choose from the wide range of drought-tolerant vegetables that are already ahead of the growing season. By buying young plants that are about to flower, you can save a month or two of vegetable garden watering.

Garden watering is more economical for certain varieties of vegetables

watering vegetable garden common green beans require short growing season

Some common beans, such as snap beans and green beans, require a short growing season and can produce a crop on small amounts of moisture.

vegetable garden automatic watering quickly establish deep root systems

Tomatoes, squash and melons quickly establish deep root systems and can draw moisture from deeper soil. There is also a variety of zucchini bred for its ability to grow in dry land conditions with roots that seek out the water table.

In fact, many tomatoes do better if you turn off irrigation in mid to late summer, as this also reduces the ability of certain fungal and bacterial diseases to take hold.

drip irrigation vegetable garden crops cool season not very drought resistant

Overall, cool season crops are not drought tolerant. These include legumes (peas, lentils and fava beans), and cruciferous crops (Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collard greens, kale, kohlrabi, mustard, broccoli, turnip and watercress).

Sweet corn and lettuce have shallow roots and don’t do well without plenty of water.

Group similar vegetables together to save water

vegetable garden watering system drip irrigation mulching low water consumption

In addition to using well-known water-saving techniques such as drip irrigation and water-efficient mulching, try grouping your vegetables according to their water needs. In general, don’t give your vegetables more moisture than they need, rather than the maximum. If you plant your garden without considering each plant’s watering needs, you could end up irrigating some plants more than they need and others less. Instead, focus on giving them the perfect amount of moisture while retaining water.

watering vegetable garden need high moderate low water

  • High water requirement: Pumpkins, onions, peppers, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, cucumbers, eggplant, potatoes and corn.
  • Moderate water requirement: Beans, cantaloupe, asparagus and cowpea.
  • Low water requirement: herbs, mustard greens, spinach, turnips, watermelon, lettuce and radish

So developing a drought-tolerant garden plan in this way gives vegetables an extra boost because they won’t be stressed by over-watering or under-watering.

Vegetable watering and soil quality: interdependence

vegetable garden without watering interdependence soil watering spongy sieve

Garden soil can act either as a sieve allowing water to seep in quickly, or as a sponge. Spongy, drought-tolerant soil absorbs water for a continuous source of moisture for plants. Incorporate high-quality organic materials, such as compost, into the dry soil at the start of each season.

If your goal is to use less water each week while gardening during drought, skip the containers and plant drought-tolerant vegetables directly in the ground. The top layer in limited spaces is more prone to evaporation and therefore requires more water than the garden soil under your feet. Be sure to check your local laws and ordinances to understand water restrictions before watering during a drought.

trick watering vegetable garden collect rainwater use garden

Appropriate a barrel or any large container to collect rainwater and use it in the garden.

With the right plants, the right tools, and solid planting strategies, even a long, hot summer can result in a successful harvest.

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