Garden Diary: Saving Water

8 January: I’m writing poetic stones for the River of Stones challenge, and today I wrote a small stone about a red rose that burst into blossom yesterday in my garden. If I lived in the southern hemisphere, this bloom would be expected, but I’m in England and this simply shouldn’t be happening in early January. Plants need a bit of time to kick-back, relax and recoup after a busy summer. They simply aren’t getting that chance with our weather in the low double-digits (Celsius).


But such a pretty, bright photo really doesn’t bring home the severity of the problem that weather is causing in SE England. This is the water reservoir for my area in Ardingly, Sussex. The reservoir’s capacity when full is 5,206 million litres, and it’s currently at 1,860 million litres. Things really look very dire indeed. When full, the water level reaches up to the walkway around that tower.


I collect water for the garden and greenhouse into massive water butts that are connected to the house downpipes and spouts. Dishwater is never tossed down the drain; it’s tossed on to plants that by nature are thirsty little devils. Some of those plants, by the way, I intend to chuck out and replace with more drought-tolerant ones. I’ve already replaced some with lavender, rosemary, heathers and vinca minor, laurels, bottle brush, and a few mock orange bushes. Our climate has changed that much that these plants now thrive in my garden.

During the winter I plan to reassess what stays and what goes. Annuals might also be kept in their seed packets for another year when rainfall is more plentiful.

One thing is for sure: I suspect that our water supplier will slap all of us in mid-Sussex with a hosepipe ban within a few months, and that’s when gardening turns into a nightmare. Sweet dreams for now.

Danish Translation for Family:

Jeg skriver digte for floden af stones udfordring, og i dag skrev jeg et lille digt om en rød rose blomstrer i min have. Hvis jeg boede i den sydlige halvkugle, ville dette flor kan forventes, men jeg er i England, og dette simpelthen ikke bør ske i begyndelsen af ​​januar. Planter har brug for en smule tid til at slappe af og opfriske efter en travl sommer. De er simpelthen ikke få den chance med vores vejr i lav-double-cifre (Celsius).

January Rose 1

Men sådan en smuk, lys foto virkelig ikke bringe hjem alvoren af ​​det problem, at vejret er skyld i SE England. Dette er vand reservoir for mit område i Ardingly, Sussex. Reservoiret kapacitet, når fuld er 5.206 millioner liter, og det er i øjeblikket på 1.860 millioner liter. Tingene virkelig se meget dystre faktisk.

Vi indsamler vand til haven og drivhuset til massive vand skod, der er forbundet til huset nedløbsrørene og tud. Opvaskevand er aldrig smidt ud af vinduet, det er smidt på planter, der af natur er tørstig små djævle. Nogle af disse planter, ved den måde, agter jeg at Chuck ud og erstatte med mere tørke-tolerante dem. Jeg har allerede udskiftet nogle med lavendel, rosmarin, lyng og vinca mindre, laurbær, og et par mock Orange buske.

I løbet af vinteren jeg har planer om at revurdere, hvad ophold og hvad går. Sæsonfisk kan også opbevares i deres frø pakker med endnu et år, når nedbøren er mere rigelige.

Én ting er sikker: Jeg har mistanke om, at vores vand leverandøren vil sætte en slange forbud inden for et par måneder, og det er, når havearbejde bliver til et mareridt. Søde drømme for nu.


8 Comments Add yours

  1. Simply beautiful! Loved the image

    1. Misk Cooks says:

      Thank you! Pretty but unexpected. 🙂

  2. Joanna says:

    Lovely contrast of photos! We get more rain than you being in the west of the country and less of those drying winds.

    1. Misk Cooks says:

      I thought we’d have rain today. Astonishingly dark clouds that blew in near lunchtime but not a drop of rain.

  3. heidi says:

    It’s warmish for January here, too.
    But we’ve gotten TWICE our regular amount of rain.
    Flooding and drought- I wish Mother Nature wasn’t so completely out of Beautiful rose!

    1. Misk Cooks says:

      The weather patterns in SE England are completely goofy this year. I sure hope rain comes our way soon!

  4. The situation with the water levels is scary, and your photo highlights it brilliantly. I also appreciate what you are trying to do with your gardening to conserve water. I’m mean with water on the vegetable plot, so results can vary, with things like brassicas often not doing as well. And I positively refuse to water potatoes! I think more of us should adopt the treat ’em mean keep ’em keen style of gardening! I’m a big believer in mulching too!
    Let’s hope for a balanced weather year

    1. Misk Cooks says:

      I don’t water potatoes either, nor the fruit trees, nor the grapevines. All of my herb garden is watered with ‘grey water’, along with potted flowers and bulbs. I do water the tomatoes and cucumbers in the greenhouse but it’s from the water butts using gravity feeds. I don’t grow brassicas because we have a leatherjacket problem. I just buy them when I need be. I’m very much looking forward to seeing how you manage this summer with your allotment. Thanks for adding your comments here, Claire. Much appreciated.

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