Tools To Help You Manage Water in Your Garden

Person picking up leaves.
Mulch is a key tool to help prevent water loss from your garden.

What tools do you need to manage water in your garden? While you might imagine a toolshed full of useful implements to assist you in your quest to save water, many of these water-saving tools are more unusual. However, they can help you in your efforts to manage overflowing water in your garden and to maintain a garden that’s overly dry as well.

Adding to Your Home Drainage System 

If your gutters are overflowing, it’s time to take a hard look at your drainage system. Adding a larger gutter could be the answer, but so could adding a gutter cover to prevent your existing gutters from getting clogged during the wet parts of the year. Make sure that your downspouts are adequate and aimed away from areas where you are going to walk if they’re pointing into your garden. Add a rain barrel to your downspouts as well so that you can save water when it is abundant. 

Use Plants as a Tool

Often we see plants as something that needs to be coddled and watered in the garden. However, plants can also act as a tool to manage conditions that are too wet or quite dry. For instance, you could:

  • Add wetland plants to manage wet places in your garden, so that you can soak up that overflowing water.
  • Use dry land plants to add ground cover to your garden, protecting your soil on hot summer days
  • Use plants placed on the sides of a swale to grow using the water collected by that swale, providing shade and organic material to the rest of the garden
  • Use your longer grass as a way to manage water. According to DIY, keeping grass healthy and longer “will help to keep your lawn green during a dry spell.”
Rain barrel.
A rain barrel can be an asset in the dry months of the year, providing extra water for your garden.

Use Permeable Surfaces 

The impermeable surface is a problem when it comes to water flow in your garden. In nature, water would trickle down into the soil, where it would be stored until the plants needed it during a dry period. On concrete or asphalt, water just runs off and forms puddles. When you can, use gravel, and other permeable surfaces to allow your soil to store water while reducing puddles at the same time. 

Mulch Your Garden

Mulch and compost are tools for increasing your soil complexity. This in turn allows your soil to store more water. Mulch, such as shredded bark, also helps water stay in the soil. If you water on straight soil, that water could evaporate off during a sunny day. When the water trickles in under the mulch, that layer protects it from evaporation.

Know When to Water 

Are you uncertain about how much water your garden actually needs? Track how much water falls on your garden, and you may not need to water as much as you’d think. Mantis states that “a rain gauge won’t make it rain; but, at least you’ll know how much water your garden has received.”

At Harry Helmet, we’re dedicated to your home and garden. Make your home life simpler: install gutter covers, a seamless gutter, or a shade awning today. Schedule a free estimate, and we’ll show you how you can reduce your home maintenance.

Written by Del Thebaud

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