In the midst of a heat wave, water scarcity, and frequent heat alerts, it’s understandable that you might feel a bit confused about how to best maintain your landscape this summer. Luckily, as an expert on all things landscaping, we have plenty of advice for maintaining your landscape even in times of drought and water waste. But before we get into the nitty-gritt details about how to keep your plants happy in these challenging conditions, let’s first look at the bigger picture and see why these challenges are so detrimental to our green friends.
What is a Drought?
A drought is a period of abnormally low rainfall, especially one that persists for an extended period. Because water is essential for plant growth and survival, a drought can be very hazardous to plants. A drought can also cause water shortages in reservoirs, rivers, and lakes. Droughts occur when many areas of the world experience below-average precipitation for weeks or months. Low rainfall can reduce the supply of water for irrigation, hydropower, drinking water, and other uses. Droughts are among the costliest weather-related disasters. There are three general types of droughts: Hydrologic, Meteorological, and Agricultural. Hydrologic droughts occur when the amount of water in rivers or reservoirs is below normal like we're seeing with Lake Powell and Lake Mead. A meteorological drought occurs when the amount of water in the air is below normal. Agricultural drought occurs when below-normal rainfall has reduced the amount of water available for irrigation.
Why is there so much water waste in the summer?
Firstly, let’s look at how much water we use to maintain our landscapes each day. In the summer, we use twice as much water as we do in the fall, winter, and spring. To put it another way, on an average day in the summer, we use 5 times more water than we do on an average day in the fall and winter. And this is to be expected. Plants that are growing need a whole lot more water than those that are sleeping for the winter. This much is obvious. But what isn’t so obvious is why we use so much more water in the summer than we do in the rest of the year. The main reason for this is that we use irrigation to water our landscapes. And it turns out that we aren’t very good at timing our watering. We say that a landscape needs a certain amount of water every day, but most of us don’t actually time our watering. This means that we water our landscapes for longer than they need it, and we end up wasting a ton of water.
Tips to Save Water When Maintaining Your Landscape
By now, you’ve seen that there is a whole lot of water waste that goes into maintaining your landscape during the summer. This is a problem, because not only do we waste water, but there are also many ways to save it. So instead of wasting it, let’s collect it and put it to good use! Start by timing your watering carefully. You can do this by setting an automatic watering schedule for your landscape and following it. Alternatively, you can use a rain gauge, smart irrigation controller, and watering rule to adjust your watering for weather conditions. This way you can save water and still keep your plants happy. Use a weed killer. Weeds are advantageous and take water away from desirable plants. Weed by hand when there are only a few weeds. Use mulch. Mulch can help keep weeds at bay, conserve water and keep your landscape looking good.
What you can do to save your landscape during drought and water waste
Now, we’ve talked about all the ways that you can save water, but what if you don’t have any? What if the area you live in is suffering from drought? How can you save your plants in these conditions? Well, we’ve got some good news. Most plants are very adaptable, and they can survive in a variety of different conditions. But you still need to look after them. Here are a few ways to help save your landscape during drought and water waste. - Get to know your plants. The best way to help your plants survive a drought is to know what they like and don’t like. - Choose the right plants for your conditions. Some plants are more resilient than others. So if you know that the area you live in suffers from drought, you can choose drought-resistant and native plants for your landscape. - Plant your plants in the right place. If you plant your plants in the right place, you can help your plants survive a drought by protecting them from extreme weather conditions.
Don’t forget the basics!
We’ve talked a lot about how to save your landscape during a drought and water waste, but we can’t forget the basics. You need to water your plants, but you need to do it right. Here are a few tips to help you water properly. - Water early in the day. Early morning is the best time to water your plants. This is because water evaporates less during the day, meaning that your plants get all the water they need without wasting any. - Water deeply and infrequently. Some plants need more water than others. But the general rule is to water deeply and infrequently. This means that you should water your plants until the water reaches their root system, but you should do it only once every few days. - Water in the right way. And remember that not all plants need to be watered the same way. Some plants may need more water than others, while others may need less water than the general rule suggests.
Having a beautiful landscape is a lot of work, but it can be even more work in a drought or during water waste. But with these 5 tips, you can make sure your landscape looks great while saving water. You can also make sure that your plants survive the drought with minimal damage. Don’t let the drought or water waste ruin your landscape. With these tips, you can keep your landscape looking great and save water at the same time.