Flower Image by Jacki-Dee

Outdoor water use accounts for around 7% of the total water use, but in the summer this can rise to over 50% of peak demand.

We encourage everybody to practice waterwise gardening. There are many ways to have a beautiful garden by using a small amount of water.


Waterwise Gardening

Easy things you can do include getting a water butt so you can use rainwater instead of tapwater to water the garden. In addition to saving our precious tapwater, rainwater is better for your plants.

Use a watering can, a drip irrigation system, or a hosepipe with a trigger. Connect it to your water butt. This allows for sensible waterwise gardening, while still conserving our precious supply.

By practicing waterwise gardening, people can still have a beautiful, living garden even in times of extreme drought. 

Quick tips

  • It’s ok to let your lawn go brown in the summer. Brown lawns are eco-friendly and it recovers immediately after rainfall. Even the Queen has a brown lawn in the summer.
  • Pressure washers use a lot of water. Use them sparingly and think about what you are doing. If must use one to wash your patio furniture or bike, do it on the lawn so the water gets recycled.
  • Lots of people use bathwater on their garden. Remember this is dirty water. Use it immediately and never store it. Do not use it on fruit or vegetables or near children.
  • Sprinklers can use as much as 1,000 litres of water per hour - more than a family of four can use in a whole day. If you must use a sprinkler, water early in the morning or late in the evening when evaporation rates are lowest. In addition turn it off when it is not being used.
  • Use a trigger nozzle on your hosepipe to halve the water used and direct the water flow to the roots of your plants. Alternatively by using a watering can you can significantly reduce the amount of water wasted.
  • Install a water butt. Your roof collects tens of thousands of rainwater each year. This could fill hundreds of water butts with free water.
  • Use a bucket and sponge to wash your car. Just 30 minutes with a hosepipe will waste hundreds of litres. And, using a bucket will give your car a much more precise wash. If you must use a hosepipe, attach a trigger nozzle.
  • Use mulch and bark in your garden to reduce evaporation by up to 75%.
  • Think about mixing some drought-resistant bedding and perennial plants to your garden to add diversity.