Maintaining a garden can be a trying undertaking at the best of times. When the weather isn’t quite in your favour, the work involved can be excessive. Fortunately though, there are a number of measures you can take to ensure the garden that you have invested hundreds of hours of work into remains pristine even in adverse weather conditions – from droughts to floods. Solutions range from permanent to temporary; some require a transformative change in your approach to plant cultivation, whilst others require nothing of the sort.
Floods caused over £1.5 billion worth of damage during the UK floods of late 2015 and early 2016. Rain is essential for the growth of almost every garden plant yet an overly excessive outpouring can derail the health of even the sturdiest garden. Whilst us Brits are more than well accustomed to receiving our fair share of rain, sometimes it can overwhelm and lead to floods – especially if our gardens lack adequate drainage and runoff.
The only immediate and 100% effective response is to employ a submersible drainage pump. The trencher range of tt pumps is particularly well-equipped to handle water containing sand and silt, which is common with a flooded garden.
As we transition from summer to autumn, the likelihood of stronger winds multiplies. Burgeoning plants are best supported by wooden stakes that help to prevent them from wilting under the pressure of strong winds. A similarly simple and straightforward countermeasure you can take to safeguard your garden is installing a temporary windbreak – plastic screening tied to a couple of posts is probably your best bet.
More permanent and natural alternatives require a slightly longer-term approach. Interspersing layers of trees and shrubs can generate a natural windbreak. Similarly, electing to keep trees that border a garden can help to protect the plants within from wind damage.
I am sure the suggestion that areas of the UK are likely to experience drought is likely to raise a few eyebrows, but the effect of climate change has already been dramatic, and drought is a very real prospect every time summer comes around. Ways of combatting drought can consist of the complex and exciting (xeriscaping) to the simple and the mundane (adding mulch and compost).
Xerophytes are organisms that can survive with little to no water, and are therefore more than capable of outlasting a British drought, which is defined as 3 or more weeks where less than a third of the typical volume of precipitation falls. Acclaimed because of their ability to take on a drought, xerophytes are also popular because they require very little maintenance, making them a very strong choice when a lack of rainfall is predicted. They do however; require an overhaul of your garden if you plan on adopting this approach for your garden in its entirety.
Simply adding mulch and compost are two far faster and cost-effective ways of fighting drought. Mulch can help off-set high temperatures by up to 10°C, ensuring the soil stays cool and the roots of your plants are able to uptake moisture.