NO RAIN!! – How to climate proof your garden

Here are some ideas, courtesy of Gardeners’ World magazine.  At time of writing we haven’t had rain for weeks & everything is parched, so these ideas are especially worth thinking about.
Creating multi-layered plantings.  
Plants help to reduce extremes of temperature in their surroundings by creating shade & by trapping air amongst their foliage.  Layered plantings of trees, shrubs & perennials mimic natural woodland and moderate the microclimate in a garden.
Grow your own.
Home grown veg, herbs & fruit, eaten fresh & full of nutrients, are not only good for us but good for the environment too.  Eating seasonal crops & preserving summer harvests by bottling & freezing reduces food miles & reliance on imported food. 

Collect rainwater.
Plants prefer rainwater to tap water and it is obviously much cheaper & better for them.  Fit water butts to all your downpipes & from sheds & greenhouses.  The less mains water we all use, the more energy is saved, reducing the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Install permeable paving.
Using gravel or porous paving allows rain to soak into the ground, reducing run off and flash flooding during downpours.
Mulch soil
This greatly reduces moisture loss from the soil and therefore cuts down the amount of watering needed during dry spells  It also helps to preserve micro-organisms that keep soil healthy.

Reduce the number of containers in your garden,  plant in the soil.
Plants in containers need more watering, feeding & general maintenance than those in the ground which can look after themselves more easily.  If you can’t grow in the ground, try and use the largest containers possible.