With summer in full swing, you may be interested in finding ways to reduce your watering chores. Here are five simple ideas.
- Grant your worn-out hose a second life by converting it to a soaker hose. Plug the end with a round stick and perforate the hose at random intervals with a sharp nail. You'll recycle and conserve water at the same time.
- To keep water from running too quickly through hanging baskets, use ice cubes. The ice will melt slowly, giving plants a chance to absorb the water they need.
If you'll be gone for a few days, punch small holes in the bottoms of disposable cups and fill them with ice cubes. Place a cup in each basket. Water will trickle into the pots slowly, and you won't need to ask a neighbor to water for you. (Do a trial run first to see how much ice you need.)
- Tired of washing soil out of your strawberry pot or whiskey barrel when you water? Cut a PVC pipe so it will be just above the soil when inserted in the pot. Drill staggered holes around the pipe from top to bottom, insert the pipe in the pot. To water, just fill the pipe. The whole pot will be watered evenly, without the mess.
- Sink a large tin can with both ends removed next to your tomato plants, angling it toward the roots. Leave the top of the can at soil level. When you water and fertilize, pour directly into the can to send moisture and nutrients right to the roots.
- Use a straight-sided can to monitor rainfall and irrigation. Adjust watering based on the water collected. Shoot for about an inch of water a week.