How to survive a heatwave

Bit of a gap in blog activity. This is because 1. I forgot the password to the admin page. Not quite as stupid as it sounds. I reformatted the computer and all the saved passwords disappeared. Obviously, a less stupid person would have written them down first.  And 2. I’ve been spending most evenings giving myself the gardening equivalent of tennis elbow watering the allotment.

At the risk of being done for heresy, I wish it would bloody rain. Even the thunderstorms that were forecast for the middle of the week have disappeared from my weather app.

Sun is good. But if I wanted to live in equatorial conditions, I’d live on the frigging Equator. Unhusband is already complaining that if it’s this hot in the UK we may as well move to Italy.  Yeah, right.

Enough moaning. Here are a few tips to make watering that little bit easier, or at least more efficient.

1. TIME IT.   Best times to water are early morning or late evening, as there’s less evaporation.  Morning is best of all as plants do their growing during the day.

2. PRIORITISE. Some plants are more thirsty than others, so if you haven’t got time to water everything, do the ones that need it most like peas, beans, courgettes, salad crops and brassicas. Root crops like carrots, parsnips, beetroot etc should be able to survive a bit longer.

3. MULCH. This is just a posh word for dumping stuff around the base of plants. Spreading grass clippings or straw on the soil after it’s watered, will help conserve moisture.

4. GET IN THE SHADE. When it’s scorching, move pots to shadier areas to prevent them drying out so quickly. Obviously, it’s not possible to shift stuff that’s been planted in the ground, but you could use shade netting.  Another option is to grow low level crops under taller crops. I’ve got lettuce growing underneath purple sprouting broccoli and they’re the only ones that haven’t bolted.

5. PRAY for rain, or bribe someone else to do the watering for you. I haven’t yet mastered either of those options.

Can’t complain too much, at least the veg is growing. Anyone know what to do for tennis elbow? Mine’s killing.





About Becky Dickinson

Mum of three. Writer, blogger, grower. Trying to keep my head above the compost heap.

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  1. I’d love to love to Italy! Great tips – especially the timing one. And the praying one… Might have to try the latter – poor plants looking sorry for themselves x

  2. Louisa @ My Family & Abruzzo says:

    I agree, although I’m pleased my french lavender (papillon) is thriving! : )

  3. My veg are growing like crazy too, although I’m struggling to remember to water my pots so one or two have suffered a bit. One of the advantages of living in Northern Ireland is that we rarely have a shortage of water and don’t pay water rates, I don’t think I ever remember us having a hose pipe ban. Although the price for that is of course that for most of the year it rains!

  4. sounds like you got it down and have quite the harvest. i live in miami where it’s hot and humid all year long. i hear ya’

    • hello to you in Miami! Thanks for reading. You probably grow way better fruit out there than we do here at least.

  5. I love doing the watering in the evening. I get the kids in bed and spend time by myself just wandering round, seeing the changes and enjoying the warm air.
    I’m not however, enjoying the blistering heat which means I also now have to water in the mornings and trying to fit that in with getting 3 children ready and off to school is not so relaxing!

  6. What a bounty of veggies! I too would like it to rain – but not till after my weekend in a tent at a festival. Sorry I’m doing a sun-dance for now!

    Great tips – thanks for sharing x

  7. what a wonderful bounty you have there all worth your hard work and fab tips too

  8. Those are some great vegetables! My garden would really love a lot of rain at the moment but I’m rather liking the sunshine during the day at least 🙂

  9. Great tips thanks for sharing, I really love the blog I am going to have to start following to get my veg growing tips I think xx

  10. I agree, we have just been looking at the forecast to see if any rain due, non for the next week or so. Although I am not complaining, although my lawn is looking a bit parched. Great bounty of veg

  11. Great tips! Your crop looks lovely x

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