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Water, water nowhere

Ever wondered how Coronation Gardens gets watered in this hot weather? Think the trees are all dying? Wish they would water more. The watering contract our local Council has with our garden managers Enable Leisure + Culture gives Enable considerable flexibility to increase watering at times like this. This is what they have been doing - increasing the frequency of watering newly planted trees to 3 times a month from 2 times and increasing the amount of water applied. They’ve also responded to requests to water last year’s trees (they have a yellow flash). That’s why they still have gator bags, those green plastic bags at tree bases which store water. Enable has upped its general watering schedule to 3 times per month.

Above: dried up Gardens showing mysterious marks. See Return of the Pigs post.

The firm that does the watering is Continental Landscapes. Grant and Graham start at 7 am after driving up from Surrey. Each has a truck with a 1000+ litre bowser on the back which takes at least 20 minutes to fill. That’s enough for about 20 trees - a tree gator bag takes 55 litres if there is one, and some are watered down in the black watering tube and also on the surface. The gator empties gradually, in 5-9 hours. As they’re getting around approx. 180 trees per day between them they can cover around 900 trees in a week, which includes our trees in Coronation Gardens and local streets.

As far as oversight of this is concerned, the Friends are members of the Wandsworth Tree Wardens Network (WTWN) who are all concerned tree lovers. We talk to Enable regularly, and the WTWN had a long meeting with Neil Blackley, Enable’s Head of Parks, to discuss this issue recently. Cllr Claire Gilbert, the new chair of the Council’s environment committee and a tree warden herself also attended and is extremely engaged. WTWN committee members have also engaged on various occasions with Cllr Judi Gasser, whose responsibility all this falls under. She, like Enable, is well aware of the issues and how urgent they are and is due to visit Coronation Gardens soon.

Post by Charles August 2022

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