A quarter of gardeners are routinely flouting a ban on using hosepipes to water their garden, according to new figures.
A poll of more than 1,000 people living in drought-affected areas suggested that 25 per cent had been totally or partially ignoring the ban.
But the survey, carried out for the magazine, Gardeners' World, also revealed that many gardeners are turning to more creative methods of watering their garden because of the ban.
Around 15 per cent had taken to watering roots directly using a bottle or a pipe, while 16 per cent had begun mulching borders with compost to try and preserve the torrential downpours covering the country. A further 13 per cent of people questioned said they added organic matter to the soil to help improve water retention.
The recent wet weather should give water companies some cause for cheer, however, as it apparently reduced gardeners' resolve to ignore the ban. While a poll of gardeners before the ban said that 17 per cent intended to break it, 46 per cent of those questioned last week said they had been saving rainwater to combat the effects of the drought.
Those who fail to obey the ban could be faced with a £1,000 fine, although Thames Water has been reported to have said that they had "better things to do with our money" than catch offenders, such as "fixing leaks".
Adam Pasco, editor of Gardeners' World magazine, said: "It's no wonder that people are questioning how there can be a drought amidst this extremely wet weather. But the fact is over a long period of time we have had incredibly dry weather and a month of rain, however torrential, is not enough to top up depleted water reserves.
"There are, however, a number of ways to train your garden to be resilient in the face of little or no water and still get great results with plants you know and love. The key to success is giving your soil plenty of organic muck and mulching vulnerable plants heavily."
05 April 2012
12 March 2012
20 February 2012