Croydon is loving the sunshine - the drought, not so much...
26th March 2012
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We have to put a positive spin on things.  If there's a hosepipe ban, we must have great weather here in Croydon right? 


Well hopefully, and in anticipation of a summer of Jubilee celebrations, the full Olympic Games experience right here on our doorstep and long hot days and balmy summer evenings, perhaps conserving as much water as possible is a small price to pay.  And it's surprising how small adjustments can make a big difference if the people of Croydon take note of these tips.




Well over half the water we use, we use in the bathroom, so this is where we should be starting our H2O conservation.


Be frugal with your flush. Most modern toilets now have a dual flush system so always use the low level button.  If you don't have this option, there are a range of simple devices available designed to be popped into your cistern to reduce the amount of water required to flush, from bags that open up and hold a percentage of the water in the cistern, to novelty ducks and frogs that take up room in the cistern thus reducing the amount of water it holds.


We have all been guilty of brushing our teeth with the tap running.  Fill up a glass to use for rinsing instead.  Ditto wet shaving.


Take a shower instead of having a bath is an obvious way to reduce your water consumption. Try and cut the amount of time spent under the shower - a simple kitchen timer in the bathroom can stop you getting carried away with your lathering, and the younger ones can (under supervision) race to get showered before the timer goes off.


Deal with any dripping taps and check the toilet and pipes for any leaks. If you're not confident with DIY, why not get one of thebestof Croydon's recommended plumbers to do the job for you?


Elsewhere in the house there are savings to be made.  Use the quick cycle on your washing machine for all but the most heavily soiled loads, and only run the dishwasher when it is full.


Even the seemingly smallest savings can add up on a daily basis. Every night my eldest takes a large glass of water to bed, and every morning throws half of it down the sink.  I've just bought some smaller glasses!


Use a bucket of water to wash the car - and the same water to wash down the front door, UPVC window frames, garden furniture etc.


If there are more bedrooms than people living in the house, then you will probably save not just water, but money, by having a water meter installed.  When you only pay for what you use you'd be surprised at how innovative you can be in the quest for water conservation!




If your garden is your pride and joy, it can be heartbreaking to see it parched and unable to flourish.  There are responsible ways of giving it the moisture it needs. 


Install a water butt in the garden - and be ready with a few spare buckets and bowls to put out in the event of a downpour.


Defrost the freezer, let those lumps of ice that drop off melt in a bucket, come to room temperature, and give the vegetable patch a well earned drink.


When you're making dinner, don't strain the vegetable water down the plug hole.  Cooled cooking water is fine for watering the lawn or garden plants.  Similarly the water from your fish tank actually contains nitrogen and phosphorus, which are excellent fertilisers for your houseplants!


For hanging baskets, place ice cubes in plastic bags with holes in to provide a slow release of water (the bags prevent the ice cubes damaging the plants).


Water the garden as late as possible in the day to prevent evaporation.  Water plants directly onto the soil as foliage will not absorb the water and this will be lost to evaporation. Break up any parched, crusted soil to allow the water to penetrate down to the roots.  Get rid of weeds regularly so they cannot 'steal' water from your flowers. 


If needs be, you can afford to 'sacrifice' the lawn in favour of your border plants.  Grass is incredibly resilient and even the brownest of lawns will recover from a dry summer after just a few heavy autumn downpours, and at least you won't have to mow it!


So let's hope that the compensation for all this H20 frugality is to see Croydon bask in the sunshine of a long hot summer filled with barbeques, lazy days and Pimms with friends!

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