How to save water in your home fruit or veg patch

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How to save water in your home fruit or veg patch

With climate changing rapidly in recent years, farmers and gardeners need to adapt to the new conditions to keep their crops healthy and productive. That’s why learning new ways to save water can be a great resource. 

Drought is one of the biggest challenges faced by agriculture, as plants need water to survive and produce food. 

Some plants have special characteristics that allow them to conserve water and survive long periods of drought. 

Others have deeper root systems, which enables them to absorb more water from the soil. Others have specialized leaves that reduce moisture loss or can even store water in their tissues.

There are many drought-tolerant varieties of fruits, vegetables, legumes and herbs that you can grow in your garden to ensure a good harvest even in the worst conditions. 

Some of these crops are native varieties that have evolved to grow in hot, dry environments, while others are hybrids created specifically to need less water.

Water-saving crops in the garden

Among drought-resistant crops we can find peas, which can grow in dry, cracked soil.

There are also varieties of spinach, zucchini, tomatoes, watermelon, herbs such as thyme and sage, and perennials such as asparagus, artichoke and rhubarb.

In addition to carefully choosing which crops to grow in your garden, there are other things you can do to make sure your plants survive the drought.

Installing a rain barrel or planting a rain garden are two excellent options for conserving water, while hedges can act as windbreaks and reduce moisture loss to plants.

Here is a list of some of the most drought-resistant vegetables, herbs and edible fruits:

Artichoke, squash, eggplant, okra, pepper, tomato, cucumber, leek, onion, garlic, asparagus, carrot, beet, radish, zucchini, eggplant, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, brunswick sauerkraut, lettuce, artichoke, green beans, peas, rhubarb, goji berries, grapes, orange, lemon, corn, borage, catnip, chives, hyssop, lavender, oregano, rosemary, sage, sweet marjoram, thyme, watermelon, melons, pineapple, willow leaf, mustard, amaranth.

Keep in mind that this list is not exhaustive and that there are many more varieties of vegetables that can withstand drought. 

Also, it is important to note that even drought-resistant crops still need water to grow and produce, so it is important to make sure your plants are getting enough water, either through irrigation or water conservation techniques such as mulching and rainwater harvesting.

Tips for saving water in the garden or orchard

Drought-tolerant crops hold up well for a week or two without water, but that doesn't mean they don't mind a lack of water. 

Although they are tougher and more resilient than regular vegetables, they need adequate moisture to be at their best and most productive.

Here are some quick tips for keeping your vegetable garden effectively hydrated when it hasn't rained a drop in weeks:

- Organic matter, such as compost, holds moisture better than sandy, loamy or clay soils.

- Mulched garden. Cover your vegetable gardens with a generous layer of mulch to slow evaporation.

- Water between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. to allow water to penetrate deeper into the soil.

- Install a drip irrigation system to water slowly and gradually.

- In container gardens, bottom watering saves water and supplies moisture directly to the roots.

- Use partner planting techniques, such as the three sisters, to shade the soil and create a living mulch at the same time.

- Keep your garden free of weeds, as they will compete with your crops for water.

- On hotter days, consider using a shade cloth to keep the top layers of soil from drying out.

- Group plants according to their watering needs: keep plants that need water together and separate them from drought-resistant crops.

The content of this article was prepared by and then reviewed by 

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