Whether you’re an aspiring Monty Don or still getting to grips with the difference between annuals and perennials, as part of #TapChat we've teamed up with Affinity Water to share some easy ways to make your gardening habits more climate-friendly, while saving time and money too. There's also the chance to win £150, so once you're done reading head to our competition page to find out more. 

 1. Choose plants fit for your climate 

Every spring, Britons flock to garden centres and local plant-nurseries to pick new plantfor our gardens. We take great pride in our gardens, yet, our choice of plants isn’t always reflective of the climate that we live in.  

Whether you’re the kind of person who plans a year in advance, or someone who believes in love at first sight – do some research and ask at your local garden centre before bringing your new plant pals home.  

If you live in the south east, drought tolerant plants that need less water to stay alive are your best bet and more likely to survive a summer heatwave. We’ve pulled together some of our favourite drought-resistant plants here. 

2. Make the most of the water 

So, you’ve got your new plants, now the challenge is keeping them alive. Besides the occasional rain-dance and picking less thirsty plants, there’s lots we can do around the garden to make water go further. Check out our tips page for saving water in the garden and our easy watering tipsCombining these tips together will ensure your garden stays healthy and suitably hydrated year-roundwhile spending less time watering and more time enjoying your garden – winning.  

3. Grow your own easy edible plants

Growing your own herbs, salads, fruits or vegetables can be incredibly satisfying, reduces food waste, food miles, saves you money and reduces unnecessary plastic packaging. It can also be a great activity for children and adults alike to see how some of our produce is grown before they reach our shelves. You may not produce enough to be completely self-sufficient (at first) but the reward of home-grown greens you’ve nurtured from seed can uplift the taste of any meal. Find out how you can grow your own at home in our blog by gardener Jack Wallington.

4. Give wildlife a helping hand

One of the easiest, and most rewarding things you can do in your garden is encouraging local wildlife to visit. Pollinators such as bees and butterflies are a great sign that your garden is producing lots of nectar and pollen (food that pollinators depend on to continue to help plants reproduce).  

Want your garden to be the bees-knees? Plant plants rich in nectar and pollen - here’s a simple guide by Kate Bradbury on how to attract wildlife to your garden.

Want to go further? Build a bug hotel for solitary insects in need of a temporary home – click here for a how-to guide.  

5. Get started with compost

Compost heaps are a great way to make use of any leftover vegetables and garden waste as well as saving you money in the long run. If you follow some simple rules, you shouldn’t have to worry about any bad smells or unwanted pests. Thinking about getting started? Check out our blog to find out how 

Not ready to start a compost pile yetMake sure the compost you buy is labelled as “peat-free”.  Not sure who or what peat is? Most store-bought composts contain between 60-90% peata product sourced from living peat bogs which have formed over thousands of years. A peat bog grows 1mm on average each year meaning 1 metre has taken over 1,000 years to form. Peat bogs are important wildlife habitats and carbon sinks so make sure the compost you take home is labelled peat-free.  

6. Reduce, reuse and upcycle

Plant pots, garden decorations and planters can be expensive and are often made from plastic. Make your garden unique by making your own! You’ll save money and reduce waste at the same time. We’ve put together our top tips on how to make use of old pallets and inspiration for different items you can turn into plant-pots.  

Looking for more ways to save money at home? Dive into our simple water saving tips and join the #TapChat.

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