A few reflections on drought for those who like me have had no proper rainfall for nearly 2 months.

As I toiled again yesterday for nearly 3 hours to water all my potted plants I was wondering how I could make life easier, but I regret I can find no short cuts to this daily drudgery except to ensure that any potting medium I use is as retentive as possible. In my case I still use compost with high peat content and add grit to allow water to penetrate more readily when my medium is dehydrated. Vermiculite instead of grit also works well.
For general planting in the ground it is better by far not to water at all unless plants are showing signs of distress. I also recommend that the baked on crust of the soil surface should not be broken. This means that any moisture below ground continues to be conserved. This is a heavy penance I know to those of a tidy disposition, since weeds have a knack of growing still, but better by far for the general health of your garden.

Finally, by popular demand, I will be offering Alliums and other early bulbs in pots from May 2010

Bon Courage