WATER CONSERVATION TIPS FOR HOT JUNE WEATHER
Because we are in this drought, instead of giving tips for the flower garden, vegetable garden & home orchard like we usually do, this month we are going to focus on what you can do to keep your valuable plants alive using as little water as possible...
MULCH, MULCH, MULCH!!
Use bark, straw, rice straw, shredded newspaper, grass clippings, wood chips, shredded leaves, even rocks and plastic sheeting (however rocks and plastic do not break down and help the soil, and they may over heat the soil and damage your plant's roots so be careful)... whatever you can get a hold of to mulch around your plants. Mulching keeps moisture in the soil, and prevents weeds which compete with your plants for water. Remember if you are mulching around trees, keep the mulch clear of the trunk by about 4- 8 inches to prevent insects and disease from infecting your tree.
DRIP, DRIP, DRIP!!
Drip irrigation maximizes the amount of water received by the plant with the least amount of evaporation or run-off. When combined with a timer you can monitor how your plants are doing and adjust the amount they are being watered back until they start showing signs of stress, then adjust it so they do not show signs of stress and monitor them if the weather changes, such as a summer shower (fingers crossed) but more likely extremely hot days. Battery powered timers are now available for garden hoses that are easy to program.
WATER WHEN IT IS COOL...
Water in the late evening, or early morning to give the plants the best opportunity to absorb all the water given to them, and prevent burning roots with hot water that could be in hoses that have been in the sun.