A bit of a sticky time for gardening enthusiasts all over the UK thanks to all the incredibly hot weather we’ve been enjoying. While a heatwave is great news for sun worshippers, it can prove to be quite disastrous for our gardens – and it’s going to get even worse for gardeners in the north-west of the country because the region’s water company has just brought in a hosepipe ban.
United Utilities has announced this Temporary Use Ban, which will come into effect on August 5th, because it’s looking like this heatwave is going to be the longest we’ve experienced since 1976. The ban will apply to domestic customers who get their water from the supplier, excepting those in the north Eden Valley and Carlisle, where supplies are currently at reasonable levels.
So what does this mean for your gardens if you are in the north? Hosepipes and sprinklers are now banned for watering private gardens and washing private cars, although you will still be able to water your plants using a watering can. And you can wash your car using a bucket and sponge, mainly because these methods use a far smaller amount of water than your sprinkler or hosepipe will do.
If you’re in the south, count yourself lucky that a hosepipe ban hasn’t been introduced in this part of the country as yet… but it seems as though it’s looking likely, if the north is anything to go by.
The supplier’s water services director Martin Padley said: “Despite some recent rainfall, reservoir levels are still lower than we would expect at this time of year and, with forecasters predicting a return to hot dry weather for the rest of July, we are now at a point where we will need to impose some temporary restrictions on customers.
“It is not a decision we have taken lightly and we are enormously grateful to customers for having helped reduce the demand on our network over the last couple of weeks, but unless we get a period of sustained rainfall before 5th August these restrictions will help us safeguard essential water supplies for longer.”
Top tips for gardening in a heatwave
You can help your garden handle the hot weather by layering some bark or compost mulch through your borders to provide some much-needed moisture at the moment. Locate any surface roots and cover them so they don’t burn and make sure you water your vegetables more than you would do normally as they’re very thirsty little plants.
Any potted plants in the sun should be kept in the shade, although you can use shade netting if there’s no shade to speak of. As for watering, you’d be wise to water in the evenings as water will evaporate during the hottest time of the day so you won’t be doing your plants as much good and you’ll be wasting our precious water resources at the same time.
For help with garden maintenance in Enfield, give us a call today.