Droughts and water metering can cause problems during hot, dry summers, but the solution is to know how to use resources efficiently and to store your own supplies.
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Water can be collected from the roofs of houses, garages, sheds and greenhouses, and stored in rain barrels that have spigots at their bases. These supplies of rainwater are a valuable alternative to city water or well water, although during hot summer months, rainfall rarely keeps up with demand.
Rain barrels are often easier to install in a convenient part of the garden than running a hose to the area. Make sure that you set your rain barrel on a stack of bricks, slabs or a specially made base, to allow a watering can to fit under the spigot. Although many gardeners dislike the appearance of plastic barrels, they are easy to disguise with ornamental planting, such as grasses and bamboo (above), or tall rows of runner beans.
Excerpted from Simple Steps: Vegetable Gardening
© Dorling Kindersley Limited 2007
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