Le Breuil. Jean de Boissy’s tips for saving water

Françoise and Jean de Boissy spend their days in the garden. Their new goal in the face of recurring water shortages: to save more and more of the precious liquid.

Every year Françoise and Jean de Boissy team up with the Lapalisse tourist office to offer visits to their garden at Domaine de la Chaize in Breuil. “We do it with great pleasure. The purpose of these visits is to share our gardening successes and failures. The important thing for everyone is to get better“. The pair of gardeners are well known in the Pays de Lapalisse. This is where they grew flowers and vegetables for 30 years. Before they retired, they received visitors to their garden and their dried flower farm. Although they stopped their activity in 11 years, Françoise and Jean do not remain idle. Just look at their garden… Fruit trees, vegetables and flowers multiply there. Once a year the public can push the gate to this Eden. This year Jean wanted to focus the visit on how to saves water He gives us some tips…

No water for the tomatoes…

The visit to Françoise and Jean’s garden attracted a large group of amateurs and expert gardeners. One thing is certain, it is that we must save water in the future. Jean decided to share some tips that he experienced himself. First, he invested in tanks and water recycling plants, which drastically reduced his consumption and thus his water bill.

Next, the gardener strongly recommends adding fertilizer to the soil when planting, “it retains moisture and thus reduces the number of waterings“. Jean’s trick is to use fertilizer that is one or two years old, never fresh. And on the irrigation side, on de Boissy, tomatoes are not allowed! “I only water them when planting, then it’s over!“. This left many visitors speechless. Especially since Françoise and Jean’s tomatoes are more desirable than pity! Although the leaves seem wilted, the fruits are abundant. “We also don’t water beetroot or endive. They know how to find the water they need“.

Mulching is worth watering…

Jean also recommends mulching. He did the experiment on his lettuce and the “non-mulched” ones went to seed twice as fast as those protected by mulch. Jean’s trick is to use fern leaves for mulching. It works.

In the orchard, Jean and Françoise avoid watering. But when they become absolutely necessary, they water ‘all at once’, so that the tree gets 50 liters of water just every two weeks. Another recommendation for a beautiful garden: natural sewage, Bordeaux mixture and sulfur spray, which Jean never hesitates to use. He gives us the recipes for his favorite natural fertilizers.

Never put fertilizer on dry soil, water before application.

Comfrey fertilizer. Stimulating from the ground. It helps the plant’s defense against diseases. Gather the comfrey leaves by the stem. Chop them. Put 1 kilo of comfrey to 10 liters of water in a plastic barrel. The butcher. Stir daily for about 10 days (until fermentation takes place). Filter.

Put in a plastic container and close. Keep it away from light.

Use: 1 liter of fertilizer for 10 liters of water. Water at the base of the plant.

For use on tomatoes, cabbage, aubergine, peppers, leeks, strawberries, fruit trees, roses, etc.

Rhubarb fertilizer. Repellent to insects and parasites. Pick up the rhubarb. The stem should be used for jam and the leaf for fertiliser. Chop the leaves. Put 1 kilo of leaves to 10 liters of water in a plastic barrel. The butcher. Stir daily for about 10 days (until fermentation takes place). Filter. Put in a plastic container and close. Keep it away from light.

Use: 1 liter of fertilizer for 10 liters of water. To be used as a spray. For use on tomatoes, cabbage, aubergine, peppers, leeks, strawberries, fruit trees, roses, etc.

Fertilization of presle. Stimulating from the ground. Control of insects and parasites. Gather the stalks of presle. Cut them. Put 1 kilo of leaves to 10 liters of water in a plastic barrel. The butcher. Stir daily for about 10 days (until fermentation takes place). Filter. Put in a plastic container and close. Keep it away from light. Use: 1 liter of fertilizer for 10 liters of water. Water at the base of the plant or use it as a spray. For use on all vegetables, fruit trees, roses etc.

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