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How to protect your plants from extreme weather
Sep 01, 2022 | written by: Helen Elfer
Worried about your plants and trees during the next extreme heatwave, drought or floods?
Scientists have warned that climate change means the extreme weather we’ve been experiencing lately will continue, so there’s little doubt that our gardens, vegetable patches and pot plants are in for more tough times ahead.
Planting trees that grow and thrive is at the very heart of what Treedom does, so we asked our Head of Forestry, Martina Fondi, for some expert advice on protecting your own environment. She recommends trying the following techniques, many of which are used in Treedom’s own agroforestry systems across the world:
1. Mulching your garden
Applying a thick layer of mulch (organic matter such as leaves or grass cuttings) keeps the moisture on soil and protects plants from drought and heat.
2. Checking on plant stability
Heavy rainstorms and wind can cause trees to crash down in gardens and public places or flower pots to fall off balconies.
3. Using shade trees
Plant trees that are shady enough to protect smaller or sensitive plants from the sun. In the short term, you can also move your pot plants to the shadiest areas of your garden.
4. Smart irrigation
Smart irrigation is essentially a system for using water efficiently – and it doesn’t have to be high-tech. Martina uses an interesting and natural method of smart irrigation, called terracotta ‘ollas’ or irrigation pots. These are used across Africa and Latin America as a simple way to water plants and trees only as they need it. A water-filled clay pot is partially buried in the soil, and the small pores of the pot mean water only flows out when the soil is dry.
5. Making use of 'natural fences'
This is a technique that can be used in private gardens as well as agroforestry – natural fences are provided by larger, sturdier trees that can protect other plants from strong winds.
Martina leads Treedom’s Forestry Team, which selects and manages Treedom’s tree-planting projects all around the world. All trees are planted directly by local farmers and bring environmental, social and financial benefits to their communities. You can support our work by planting a tree in any of these projects today with just a click!
If you would like to plant a tree with Treedom, you can do it here!
Image credit: Spitalfields Gardens by Herry Lawford, CC by 2.0