Saving water during summer months can be easy with a bit of preparation

Evening is best: During summer the best time to water is late in the afternoon or early evening as it gives the garden and lawn time to absorb the water while it's cooler.
Evening is best: During summer the best time to water is late in the afternoon or early evening as it gives the garden and lawn time to absorb the water while it's cooler.

With more than 40 per cent of the household water bill used outdoors its easy to see why water use increases during summer.

Gardens and lawns typically need more water during the warmer months but keeping your garden healthy doesnt have to hike up your water bill if you plan ahead.

Experienced gardener Mick Cave said his biggest tip is to use a wetting agent.

Get a hose-on wetting agent and use that once a month, he said.

Sometimes water can bead on the top, the wetting agents allows the water to soak in.

Using mulch around trees and on garden beds can also help during summer.

Helping hands: Mulch can help keep soil moist and cool.

Helping hands: Mulch can help keep soil moist and cool.

The mulch prevents the soil from drying out by keeping direct sunlight off it stopping the water from evaporating and stops weeds from growing.

Its important to prevent weeds as they use water and take up nutrients, Mr Cave said.

Mulching around the base of trees which are in the lawn is also a good idea.

The tree will grow much better with mulch around it, he said.

Theres less competition and the roots retain moisture.

Plus the lawn never really grows right up to the trunk of a tree. Mulch out about a metre and a half around trees.

When it comes to watering during the warmer months opt for late in the evening.

Its the cooler period and allows water to be in the soil before it warms up in the morning, Mr Cave said.

Water for at least 20 minutes or more at a time but not everyday, generally two or three days a week is enough.

My biggest tip for lawns and gardens is to use a wetting agent

Gardener Mick Cave

If you water everyday it promotes narrow roots close to the surface and if you get a dry period those plants wont cope with it, Mr Cave said.

The same concept should be used when it comes to watering garden beds.

The placement of plants can potentially save a lot of money on water bills.

You always have to water for the plant that needs the most water, Mr Cave said.

If you put plants that use a lot of water together in one area and those that dont in another it will reduce the amount of water you use.

You could have a garden bed that only needs watering once a month but if you put a plant in there that needs watering everyday then you have to water it everyday.

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