Helen Dillon, the world renowned gardener, provides some top-notch advice and tips on watering your garden.
- Having water available on tap in various spots around the garden means that you don’t put off watering something that needs it. We have placed large wooden barrels or dustbins under our taps as it’s quicker to dunk a watering can than wait for it to fill from the tap.
- The most soothing job in the garden is to stand, on a warm evening, holding a garden hose, aiming the water absentmindedly at no plant in particular. It gives a satisfying feeling of hard work when it’s nothing of the sort. I reckon it’s the lazy sprinkle that probably harms the plants, by encouraging roots towards the surface, and it’s better gardening to give each plant an occasional real good soak with a can. Plants in this garden that are watered very regularly by hand on summer evening are clematis, delphiniums and dahlias.
- An easy trap for beginners concerns the watering of containers. How many times have I heard people say there’s been rain, and therefore there’s no need to water? Probably all the rain has done is make the leave look satisfyingly damp, leaving the roots dry (incidentally an invitation to mildew). Even in winter (not in frosty weather) established evergreens in pots, such as camellias, bay trees and box, need watering. In summer containers need an immense amount of water, certainly once a day and possibly twice when it’s hot. A whole watering can per pot is the ration.
- I think grouping all the plants that need extra watering in the same place is a valuable concept. It saves you from dashing here and there to rescue a fainting phlox, willow gentian or astilbe.
For more hints, tips and advice on creating and maintaining a gorgeous garden, buy Helen Dillon’s Garden Book (Frances Lincoln Ltd).
Source: House & Home Magazine