One of the joys of gardening are watching your garden grow and your various plants blossoming into juicy, healthy and natural food. Having a polytunnel vegetable garden is a wonderful experience because you can grow healthy veg all year round and at least in a small way become a little bit self-sufficient. Of course plants need water to grow healthily, and whilst you can get water from the mains, there may be better options for the true organic gardener. There are a few reasons why you might not want to use mains water:
Rightly or wrongly, some people get a big kick from knowing that their food supply doesn’t rely on any big corporations or infrastructure. But until you supply your own water you are still reliant on the water company to keep your garden alive.
It saves you money
Ok, so water isn’t the most expensive household bill, but the costs of watering a vegetable garden can add up and every little helps as they say. Saving some water can save you money for relatively little effort.
It’s environmentally friendly
We live on a delicate planet and wanting to not waste what we’ve got is certainly a worthwhile goal. Many people around the world can’t get enough water, so why not show them some solidarity by not taking your own supply for granted?
How Should You Collect Water for Your Garden?
- Non-Potable Water The downside to collecting water is that most supplies that are available are not potable, which basically means that they are not drinkable. When watering flowers this isn’t a problem of course, but if you are using it to water your veg garden you should take care:
- Above ground veg For things like lettuce and other above ground items, the simplest option is to simply use below ground irrigation. Lettuces are tricky to clean, so watering only the roots will keep the head clean and edible.
- Below ground veg What about your carrots you say? Well you obviously can’t avoid watering those directly can you? But all you have to do is give them a good wash in drinkable water before eating them.
- Collecting Rain Water One of the most popular ways to collect water is by catching rainwater from your own roof, although you can collect any rain that falls on your property really. You can even attach guttering to your polytunnel to collect extra water. Rainwater is obviously very natural and collecting it during the winter is a great way to save water costs and the environment during the summer. This is particularly helpful if you often have dry summers and hose-pipe bans.
- Pond Water If you are lucky enough to have a garden pond, this can be a great source of water. For best results, you need to keep your pond healthy, since no-one wants to chuck stagnant water on their carrots. Installing a pond-pump is a good way to keep your pond healthy. Another great bonus, particularly if you keep fish or have a nature pond full of natural life, is that pond water can be very rich in nitrogen, which is great for your plants. So scoop up some pond water occasionally and treat your veg some nutrition.
About Me Hi there, my name is Ricky, I work for Swallow Aquatics, we sell gardening and pond supplies such as filers and liners. Thanks for reading my post.
Originally posted 2013-06-10 12:14:50.
Sean Barker is the MD of First Tunnels, and is enthusiastic about providing quality gardening supplies to gardeners across the UK