Garden Watering & Spraying (November 2020 Updated Review)
We all know that grass, plants and flowers need water to live and thrive, but getting the right amount of water to specific areas of your garden can be hard to remember not to mention time consuming if you’re just using a standard, good old fashioned hose.
Those problems have been taken off our hands these days with all kinds of watering, spraying and irrigation tools and systems available.
There are different types of watering cans and hoses, self-watering troughs, drip irrigation systems, micro jet and spray systems, mini sprinkler systems, soaker hose systems, and much more.
Also available on the market is a wide variety of spray guns, nozzles and other fertiliser application tools.
With so much available, how do you choose the right things for your garden?
Well, that’s where we come in.
Read on and I’ll try my best to explain what each one does, what they are best used for and pick some of the best available for reviews.
Garden Spray Guns and Nozzles
How about we start with improving the standard hose with a spray gun? It’s surprising how much difference a spray gun or good nozzle can make.
You can get concentrated jet nozzles for cleaning off garden equipment, various sprayers for watering your plants, long range spray lances for hard to reach spots, spray guns that are designed to fit comfortably in your hand, and others with features like anti-frost designs to keep them working in cold weather.
Then there are the multi-function spray guns that do all of the above.
Again, there are so many out there to choose from that it’s easy to get lost in your decision, but below I’ve reviewed a couple of the best for you.
Garden Spray Gun and Nozzle Reviews 2019
To keep things clear and easy to understand, I’ll first review nozzles only. The kind that you can slip onto the end of your hose without a spray gun and use instantly.
After that I’ll move on to spray guns themselves.
Best Budget Garden Hose Nozzle reviews
The best thing about garden hose nozzles is that they start very cheap and are affordable for everyone. These nozzles are, in my opinion, the best you can find at a very low price.
1. Hozelock Hose Nozzle
Hozelock make some great products and this nozzle is no exception. Priced at only £6.01 on Amazon at he moment (don’t ask me why they decided on the extra penny???) it is a garden nozzle that gives very good value for money and has received positive reviews from the vast majority of customers.
Despite being very cheap, the materials used in its construction are surprisingly good and it doesn’t feel like it will fall apart in your hand after 5 minutes. On the contrary, if properly looked after and not misused, I think it would prove to be fairly durable.
The hose nozzle connects to your regular garden hose via its ‘quick connect male connector’ which works well. Just ‘snap’ it on and you’re good to go.
You can adjust the water stream by simply holding the grey part of the nozzle and twisting the yellow part. This changes the stream across a spectrum of pressures from a focused ‘jet’ to a mild spray, and it can be turned off with the same twisting action.
When I first used this, the twisting action was a little stiff with the product being brand new, but after a couple of goes, it loosened nicely.
A design feature I liked is the fact that this budget hose nozzle doesn’t drip when using it and also when you connect or disconnect it. It’s not life changing, but leaking and dripping is common when dealing with cheap garden hose nozzles and it’s refreshing not to have that problem.
A thing to keep in mind though is that this is a budget garden hose nozzle and isn’t designed to be kept outside in winter. If you do so, don’t be surprised if it splits or doesn’t work properly come spring.
One thing I didn’t like was the packaging in came in which was a flimsy plastic bag. I just think that increases the risk of the hose nozzle getting damaged in transit and could be easily sorted by Hozelock.
- Fairly well-built for price
- Easy to use
- Non-drip design
- Can be damaged by cold weather
- It’s plastic so can crack if dropped on concrete
- Flimsy packaging
This budget garden hose nozzle from Hozelock is a no frills product that gives good value for money.
2. Tech Traders ® 4 Pcs Brass Hose Pipe Fitting Set/Garden Tap Hosepipe Quick Connectors & spray nozzle
The main issue people have with cheap hosepipe nozzles is that they are usually made of plastic, and while that makes them lightweight, it also makes them susceptible to breaking if dropped.
Tech Traders have decided to tackle that problem by making a robust nozzle made of brass. The only problem now should be dropping it on your foot while wearing flip flops in summer.
The brass hose nozzle comes with 3 other solid brass attachments, a half inch female connector, a three quarter inch tap connector and a half inch connector with a shut off design. These are all made to last and come with a lifetime guarantee from Tech Traders (the guarantee has to be applied for by email within 30 days).
Like the Hozelock nozzle, this nozzle’s water stream can be adjusted from off, to jet, and to spray by twisting it and this works well.
The connectors are quick and easy to use but I did notice some wobble between them when connected together and I should note that they aren’t compatible with many other brands of spray guns.
The stop valve wasn’t always consistent either when changing connections but it did its job well when attached and the nozzle was working.
- Made from brass
- Lifetime guarantee
- Easy to use
- There was some wobble between connections
- Not compatible with many other brands
- Some leaking when changing connections
For such a cheap price you are bound to get a few flaws, but the brass connectors and hose nozzle are built to last.
Spray Gun Reviews 2019
Ok, now it’s time to look at some spray guns. A good spray gun can come with a good selection of features, such as ergonomic designs, not losing water pressure like nozzles can, and a lot of watering patterns.
I’ll start as I did above with a review of the model that I think is the best budget spray gun.
Best Cheap Spray Gun (under 5 pounds)
1. Melnor XT201Heavy Duty Spray Gun
For under 5 pounds you’d be lucky to find a better spray gun than Melnor’s XT201.
Unlike the majority of spray guns in this price range, the XT201 is not made entirely of plastic. Instead Melnor have chosen to go with a heavy duty metal construction to prolong the longevity of their spray gun.
The head of the spray gun is rubberised, as is the grip and trigger to make it comfortable to use for long periods and to prevent slipping. Although touted as heavy duty metal, the trigger is actually still made from plastic.
There is a metal adjustment nut on the back of the gun for controlling water flow.
The XT201 gives you a choice of 7 different spray patterns- a flat jet and normal jet, a soaker, cone spray, shower, mist, and full spray. You should be able to find one that suits your needs among them. The spray patterns are changed by twisting the nozzle and there are markers to show you which you have selected.
For under 5 pounds you expect a few problems, and I found mine with 2 of the spray patterns. The soaker pattern seemed a little pointless to me, as water just drips out, but maybe others would find a use for it. The other thing was the shower function. On my model, it seemed to spray out to the sides more than the front.
- Low price
- Metal body
- 7 spray patterns
- Comfortable grip
- Two of the spray patterns were useless
- The trigger is still made from plastic
- Some minor leaking
All in all, not a bad effort at all from Melnor, and for such a low price it’s worth considering.
Most Durable Cheap Spray Gun
1. Gardenite 10 Pattern Metal Garden Watering Nozzle
My choice for the most durable cheap garden spray gun for sale in the UK is the heavy duty, 10 pattern, garden watering nozzle by Gardenite. It’s available now for £16.95 (more if you buy it as a pack with brass connectors) and is worth every penny.
This garden spray gun certainly lives up to its ‘heavy duty’ name and is built to last with its solid metal construction. On top of that, Gardenite have given their spray gun a baked enamel finish to prevent rust and ensure longevity.
This enamel coat, along with a nice colour scheme, also gives the spray gun an aesthetically attractive look.
The handle is covered in a soft rubber for a comfortable grip to prevent losing your grip after you’ve been watering the garden for a long time.
On the back of the spray gun is the easy to reach, flow control knob. This knob allows you to control and adjust the water pressure so you don’t go damaging your more fragile plants and flowers.
Like the name suggests, the Gardenite 10 pattern spray gun has, you guessed it, 10 different spray patterns to choose from, you can use the jet to clean mud off your gardening tools or use the softest spray to give your dog a well needed bath.
These 10 patterns, combined with the flow control knob adjusting the pressure, make getting just the right type of spray a simple straight forward task.
Unfortunately, nothing is perfect and I noticed that the overall water pressure was lower when using this than my old spray gun which was a Hozelock model.
I have seen the odd complaint online of leaking problems, but I never experienced any of that.
- Strong metal construction
- 10 spray patterns
- Flow control knob
- Rust preventing enamel finish
- Comfortable grip
- Doesn’t work well with low water pressure
- There have been complaints of leaking over time
In summary, the Gardenite 10 pattern garden watering nozzle is a well rounded spray gun with some nice features, but you can run into problems if your house has low water pressure.
Best Spray Gun UK Review
1. Draper 25342 7 Pattern Aluminium Spray Gun
The Draper 25342 spray gun is for sale at a price of just £11.19, which in my opinion is a steal.
The main body of Draper’s spray gun is made out of good quality aluminium. A great chouce of material as aluminium doesn’t rust like other metals. The hose connector is made from brass.
It is also lightweight at only 18 grams.
The handle has been completely covered in a ‘ribbed’ rubber coating to prevent your hands slipping off during use and the grip itself has an ergonomic design that lets your fingers fit snugly onto it.
When compared to the other Spray guns we’ve reviewed, the Draper seems to produce a more powerful and long reaching water flow and almost seems to magnify the low pressure that comes from my outdoor tap.
There are seven spray patterns to choose from and they all work excellently. I was particularly impressed with the mist spray and very strong jet.
The only negative I have is that there was a slight drip from the hose connector, but this could be just down to my particular model as this isn’t a common complaint.
- Anti-rust aluminium body
- Very comfortable handle
- All spray patterns work well
- There was a slight drip on my model
The Draper 25342 is my overall favourite spray gun. It’s durable, powerful and does what it’s supposed to do, and all for a low price.
Now let’s move on to garden sprayers.
Compression Garden Sprayers
Garden sprayers are a great (some would say necessary) addition to your gardening arsenal. They are very versatile tools, being able to distribute a wide range of fluids onto your garden such as plain old water, fertilisers, pesticides, fungicides and pretty much any other type of liquid.
Another advantage of compression garden sprayers, is that they are mobile. Whether designed to be pulled on wheels or carried like a back pack, they give you a versatility and freedom that hoses can’t match.
They are designed to prevent you using too much of your chemicals. You dilute to the correct levels and then the fine spray evenly distributes them onto your garden.
I’ve reviewed a few for you here, starting with two of the best for sale at under 20 pounds. Take a look.
Best Cheap Garden Sprayers UK Reviews (Under 20 pounds)
1. Spear & Jackson Pump Action Pressure Sprayer, 5 L
Our first budget choice is the best-selling, 5 litre pump action pressure sprayer from Spear & Jackson. It’s priced at £12.40 with free delivery in the UK.
It is comprised of a 5 litre capacity bottle for holding non-viscous soluble or water based products, a 560mm watering lance and a 1.3 metre hose connecting them.
The 5 litre bottle is translucent and is helpfully marked with graduations in litres and fluid ounces so you can be sure your mixes are accurate before use. There is also a user’s guide in picture form on the rear of the bottle.
On top is the pump that is manually operated and produces the compression, and on the shoulder of the bottle is a pressure release valve to prevent damaging the product.
The pump piston is fitted with a good sized and well lubricated ‘o-ring’ to make the pumping action one of ease.
The pressure vessel on this garden sprayer is made of durable plastic and should last a while if taken care of properly.
The pump handle and wand are all made from plastic so you need to take care of them as they aren’t as durable as metal models, but as long as you aren’t throwing them around carelessly they will be pretty durable.
This garden sprayer also comes with a shoulder strap attached to the 5 litre bottle to aid you in carrying the unit around your garden.
The 560mm lance has an adjustable nozzle that changes from spray to mist and includes a lockable trigger for continuous spraying without the need to hold the trigger. I did find the twisting motion to change sprays a little stiff though and the range of sprays was really only between fine mist, regular spray and jet. To be fair that’s all you really need but some customers prefer more variety.
Also be aware that this is a garden sprayer not a high pressure washer, so the jet spray isn’t going to be enough to clean thick dirt off your car.
A water flow regulator is another additional feature that comes in handy.
When not in use, the lance can be stored in a space in the pump handle and sits horizontally.
One design fault I did notice was that the hose and lance tended to get in the way when I unscrewed the top to fill the bottle. I found awkward and annoying, but it’s not a constant problem.
- Low price
- Well marked bottle for measuring and mixing
- Easy pumping action
- Lockable trigger
- Pressure release valve
- Water flow regulator
- Filling the bottle was a little awkward because of lance
- Twisting the nozzle was a bit stiff
- Made from plastic so damage is likely if not used properly
For under 20 quid, the spear and Jackson garden sprayer does a good job at what it’s meant to do. It’s not perfect, but will keep most people happy.
Another cheap garden sprayer is…
2. VOXON 5L Pump Action Pressure Sprayer
This garden sprayer from Voxon is a close competitor of the Spear and Jackson model we just reviewed and shares a lot of its features.
It has the same sized hose and spraying lance and also, like the Spear and Jackson, has a 5 litre capacity tank. The Voxon garden sprayer is for sale at £16.99.
The tank is graduated in fluid ounces and litres for mixing and is translucent so you can see the fluid level inside.
On top of the tank is the pump, which again is manually operated. Most of the time the pump worked effortlessly but every now and again it would get stuck.
Around the base of the pump on this garden sprayer is a funnel that helps to prevent spilling when filling the tank.
The pressure bar and pump handle can be removed by twisting it anti-clockwise, leaving the funnel in place to guide the fluids into the bottle. I thought this was a nice little design feature.
Just like our previous review, the Voxon 5 litre garden sprayer bottle has pictures on it to guide you in its operation and comes with a shoulder strap for mobility.
This model also has a pressure relief valve that will release automatically when a certain pressure value is reached and prevents you from over pumping and breaking the garden sprayer.
The lance is much the same as the Spear and Jackson garden sprayer, 560mm long, made from plastic, adjustable spray from the nozzle and having the option to lock the spray on without the need of holding the trigger. All fairly standard but works well.
Again I found the nozzle a bit stiff to turn and the hose attachment felt a little flimsy.
I was happy to see that this garden sprayer came with a complete set of spare rubber seals and O-rings which I’m sure will come in very handy and should increase the working life of the product.
- Low price
- Well marked translucent bottle
- Funnel feature for easy filling
- Lockable trigger
- Pressure release valve
- Comes with spare seals
- Lance feels fragile
- Pump stuck occasionally
- Twisting nozzle was a bit stiff
The Voxon 5 litre pump action garden sprayer share many of the Spear and Jackson sprayer’s features and qualities. Unfortunately, it also shares most of its flaws, plus one or two of its own which reduces it to second place in my reckoning for best cheap garden sprayer.
Time to take a closer look at the number 1 seller on Amazon-
Best Selling Garden Sprayer UK
1. Hozelock Pressure Sprayer Pro 7 Litre
When it comes to garden water tools the Hozelock brand are usually a safe bet. This is their Pressure Sprayer Pro, and it’s the best seller on Amazon.
This is a heavy duty garden sprayer aimed at high performance and long lasting durability. The overall build quality feels good and this garden sprayer has a number of features that are designed to prolong the working life of this product such as-
- nickel plated brass nozzle
- Heavy duty, metal pump nozzle and shaft
- Viton seals to provide more resistance to acids and alkalines
The bottle has the same features as our last two garden sprayer reviews, namely; translucent and graduated to help with mixing, built in pressure release valve, and wide handle for pump.
On top of that, this garden sprayer also has an integrated dosing cap and the sprayer does a great job at accessing the last few drops out of the bottom of the bottle
Although the bottle has a capacity of 7 litres, the maximum filling level is still only 5 litres.
The water pressure power the Hozelock produces after a few pumps is impressive and is more than enough to get the job done.
The lance is telescopic so you can choose what length you need from 50cm – 90cm. Like the rest of the garden sprayer, it feels well-made and not likely to break easily. 90cm is probably enough for most people, but I found that it was a little too short for what I wanted. However, I found an extended lance from the same makers for 10 and it works great.
This product come with 2 spray heads- a conical one and a flat one.
While most things feel well-made and good quality, the hose feels less so and leaked a little.
Another gripe is that the instructions that came in the box weren’t up to much. Ther’s a video on youtube that does a good job of explaining everything though.
- Well built
- Has durable features like the Viton seals
- Gets the last drops out of the bottle
- Good pressure
- Telescopic lance
- 2 spray heads
- Poor instruction manual
- 7 litre tank can only be filled 5 litres
- Hose feels of lesser quality than the rest of the product
While being a little let down by its hose and poor instructions, this Hozelock garden sprayer is still a quality product and a best seller.
As you probably already know, the biggest problem with any hose, spray gun, sprayer, etc. is with leaking connections. A lot of people either put up with the leaks or throw out the whole product because of a single dodgy connector.
This seems a little silly to me as there are numerous connectors and nozzles available for sale online that can solve these little leaking problems.
Hose Connectors and Clip Reviews 2019
Here are two short reviews for hose connectors, one plastic from well-known manufacturers ‘Hozelock’ and one metal connector from equally renowned brand Ansio. These are followed by a very brief review of the best hose clip.
Best Plastic hose connector UK
1. Hozelock 2293 Hose Y Connector
Our pick for best plastic hose connector comes from Hozelock. Their 2293 Y-connector is a handy little piece of kit to have around.
Priced at just over four pounds, this plastic connector isn’t going to break the bank anytime soon.
For that cheap price, you get a fairly sturdy piece of equipment. The plastics used are all high quality, as are the seals and O-rings and this product doesn’t leak.
The Hozelock 2293 is a Y-connector so you can attach 3 hoses to it at once and it splits the water flow. This is great if you want to water two areas of the garden at the same time or to give your flower beds a drink while washing the dog. Talking of giving Fido a shower, you could always attach a hose from a cold tap and one from a hot tap to get a nice water temperature.
This is a great product and the only downside to using it should be obvious- the water pressure is halved if you have two outgoing hoses working at the same time. However, if you have two ingoing hoses and one outgoing, this won’t be the case.
- Well-built with strong plastic
- No leaks
- Can water to areas of the garden at once
- Can attach from two taps to get the temperature you want
- Water pressure is shared between all outgoing hoses
The Hozelock 2293 Plastic Y-connector is a great addition to your gardening tool set. It’s durable, and does what it’s designed to do well.
Best Brass Hose Connector UK
1. ANSIO Garden Brass Hose Tap Connector 3/4 Inch & 1/2 Inch
When it comes to durability, you can’t beat brass connectors as they resist rust and corrosion very well and they won’t crack in winter weather or fall apart if you drop them on the floor. The makers, ANSIO, know this all too well and are so confident in their product that they offer a 5 year warranty. Not bad for a product that is on sale for only £4.29.
As you probably guessed from the name, this brass connector is for attaching a hose and connecting to a garden tap, helping to prevent leaking, and it does that very well. Even when the tap was turned on full with a lot of water pressure going through to a pressure sprayer, the connector did its job excellently and there wasn’t a single drop coming out.
This brass hose connector come in two female threaded parts that connect together. When they are joined, the connector will fit a ½ inch tap, but if you unscrew the top part, it will fit a ¾ inch tap.
I haven’t got anything negative to say about this product. It’s a no thrills, does what it says on the tin, durable connector.
- Low price
- Rust and corrosion resistant
- Great build quality and durable
- Doesn’t leak even with high pressure
- Can connect to two tap sizes
Best Cheap Hose Clip Review UK
1. Bradas (PACK OF 2) STAINLESS STEEL HOSE CLIPS
Hose clips are used for fastening/ securing hoses, usually for safety reasons or to just tidy up the work area a little. They come in various shapes and sizes but this circular. Screw to tighten design is the most common and popular for home use.
These particular hose clips are from the Bradas brand. They are made of stainless steel and are made to last.
In this pack are two 9 milimetre wide stainless steel, adjustable hose clips. They are available in the following sizes-
8-12mm, 12-22mm, 16-27mm25-40m, 32-50mm, 40-60mm, 50-70mm, 60-80mm, 80-100m, and 90-110mm.
All sizes are for sale at the same price of £3.59
Garden Hose and Hose Reel Reviews 2019
You can buy the best spray gun and use the most expensive connectors, but it won’t matter if you are using a low quality hose that springs leaks as soon as you pass water through it. A good quality garden hose is a staple of a useable garden tool kit and its importance should not be overlooked or underestimated.
Here are a couple of reviews of good hoses that are available in the UK.
Best 50 Metre Hose Review
1. Hozelock Ultimate Hose, 50 m
Hozelock have put their extensive knowledge and experience into this product and created an excellent, if a little pricey, garden hose.
It utilises Hozelock’s ‘super trioflex’ technology which is a 5 layer, knitted construction and this makes this garden hose much lighter than its competitors (just 7 kilograms) while still remaining robust and long lasting. The Hozelock ultimate garden hose comes with a 30 year guarantee.
This same structure enables the hose to remain flexible and free of kinks, to withstand things crushing it and to be anti-twist. However the hose arrived already coiled and had to be uncoiled and laid out flat in the garden for a day to make sure I got the benefit of the design features.
The hose did still kink from time to time but I have to say that it was rare.
It is also resilient to weather damage, as Hozelock have made this product resistant to UV rays and also frost, so you can leave it out in the garden with a clear conscious.
This garden hose has been created with your health and the environment in mind, and contains no heavy metals or other harmful toxins.
- 50 metres long
- Anti-twist and kink
- Robust design
- Needs to be uncoiled when first bought and laid out for a while
- Still kinks occasionally
In summary, the manufacturers have done a very good job with this garden hose and it has some good innovations.
Best Hose and Spray Gun Set Review
1. ANSIO Garden Hose Pipe 50 Ft with Brass Connectors & 9 Function Spray
On sale for £21.99, this set from ANSIO is great deal. Included are an expandable hose, brass connectors and a 9 setting spray gun.
Let’s start with the hose.
It is constructed of strong polyester webbing and is expandable. This hose can be stretched by strong water up to 15 metres (50 feet) from its original size of 5 metres, although if your house has very low water pressure, it might not work as well.
After use, the hose will retract itself back to its starting length within a few seconds, draining itself of a lot of the contained water at the same time.
This expanding/retracting feature is great as it not only gives you the range when you need it, but the compactness too for ease of storage. Talking of storage, you will need to keep this garden hose out of prolonged direct sunlight as it isn’t UV proof like the Hozelock 50 metre hose.
the hose is fitted with solid brass connectors that do their job well.
The spray gun is a plastic construction with rubber non-slip grip parts on the handle. On the back of the head is a twistable nozzle to control the water flow and the on/off trigger sits on the back.
The spray head has 9 different spray modes- flat, full, centre, mist, soaker, angle, jet, cone, and shower. They worked reasonably well but I found there was some slight leakage from one or two of them. A good thing though is that the connectors should fit most spray guns from other brands if this becomes a problem.
This garden hose set comes with a 1 year warranty.
- Well-made expanding hose
- Brass connectors
- 9 spray patterns
- Easy storage
- Not suitable for low water pressure
- Not weatherproof
- Slight leakage from 1-2 spray patterns
If you have a home that has average or more water pressure, then this set is an excellent buy. The innovative features and durable construction of the hose and connectors make this garden hose very good value for money. Just make sure you pack it away and store it out of sunlight.
Best Self-Reeling Garden Hose UK
1. Hozelock Auto Reel with 40m Hose
Let’s be honest, one of the worst parts about using a hosepipe is that after you’re done, you have to spend time reeling it back in.
This self-reeling garden hose from Hozelock attempts to relieve us of that duty.
On sale at £110, this isn’t the cheapest hose on the market, but it does have its fair share of interesting features.
First of all, it is designed to be wall mounted as to keep the fairly bulky box that houses the reel out of the way. I found that the fittings supplied by the manufacturers weren’t the best and opted to use my own and it felt much sturdier.
The hose and reel can be removed from the wall for storage during the colder months of the year and there is an integrated padlock function to deter thieves.
On the side of the casing you can find the child lock to prevent your kids from using it as a toy and misusing it.
The main unit can pivot 180 degrees, meaning that you can move around your garden with ease and no snagging.
The hose will automatically lock in place when you stop pulling negating the need to hold it in place. If you need more length, simply pull it again and it will unreel more. When you’ve finished and want to reel in, you give the hose a short tug and the auto reel does the rest. It’s a simple design that works as it’s supposed to.
The garden hose is housed in a plastic casing that helps to prevent UV damage. It is still susceptible to frost though and needs to be stored well for winter.
There have been complaints about leaking coming from inside the unit but these are in the minority and most customers are happy. The product comes with a 5 year guarantee, so if there are any major problems, you can always get it replaced.
- Self-reeling function
- Good quality hose
- Pivots 180 degrees
- Wall mounted
- Child lock
- Can be secured by padlock
- Easy to use
- Over £100 price tag
- Not frost resistant
- All fittings supplied could be better
The self-reeling mechanics work really well and the hose doesn’t kink or twist. The pivoting wall mounted unit is a good feature as are the child lock and option to secure it with a padlock.
There have been a few complaints of leaking and I found the fittings for the wall mount didn’t inspire confidence.
Best Garden Hose Reel
1. Claber 8891 Metal 60 Trolley
At just under 60 pounds, the Claber 8891 is a little pricey for some, but for the extra money, you get a far better build quality than most of its competitors.
The construction is mostly made from metal but there are still a few plastic parts such as the wheels, which could have been made bigger and maybe pneumatic, and the turning handle sleeve.
Despite being smaller than I’d have liked, the wheels do their job and you won’t have problems moving the hose reel around your garden.
All being said, it is a sturdy product, made in Italy and built to last.
The only thing that concerns me is that the plastic parts will fail well before the metal ones. Then again, plastic parts are usually easy to replace.
When fully assembled, the dimensions of the Claber 8891 hose reel trolley are 88 cm high,
Width including winding handle measures 49 cm, and it is 45cm long.
Talking of assembly, there is some required and while there are no paper instructions, there are some printed on the box that the hose reel comes in.
There is also a video on youtube that can help.
One thing that may annoy some people is that this hose reel requires two hose connectors to work but comes with only a single connector. It’s an easy fix, but something you need to be aware of.
- Made in Italy and well-built
- Sturdy and stable
- Reeling action works well
- Easy to use
- Still has a few plastic parts
- Needs two connectors but only 1 supplied.
This hose reel is the best out there for one main reason- it is well built and will serve its purpose for years to come. There are things that could be improved but it outshines other products in its class.
Self-Watering Trough Reviews 2019
These products are sold under various titles- self-watering troughs, self-watering containers, self-watering window boxes, etc. etc.
Self-watering troughs are ideal for people who don’t have time to water their plants as often as needed or, if you’re like me, are just a bit forgetful.
Though called self-watering, they actually don’t water your plants for you, at least not in the traditional sense. What they do is provide a consistent supply of moisture for your plants via a wicking system so that they don’t need you to water them as frequently.
Most of these self-watering troughs are a simple design. The water reservoir sits at the bottom and your soil/potting mix and plants sit in the top section, which is separated from the water by a divider.
Because the water sits under the plants, less of it evaporates, meaning you get a more efficient use of your H2O.
Like everything these days, you are spoilt for choice when it comes to brands and models. Here I have reviewed a couple for you.
Best Self-Watering Trough UK
1. Lechuza Colour Balconera White Self Watering Balcony & Window Box Planter Pot
Lechuza are a well-known brand when it comes to self-watering gardening products. This particular model is available in two sizes- 50cm, priced at £29.99 and a larger 80cm version on sale at £39.99. It is also comes in a choice of 4 colours- Slate, white, pistachio green, and nutmeg.
The Balconera self-watering trough can be used both indoors and outdoors. The manufacturers have made sure that their product is UV resistant, weatherproof and frost proof, so it will survive our ever changing UK climate.
This self-watering trough takes the guesswork out of it the equation with a water level indicator letting you know the optimal level of water for the reservoir and also when to refill it.
If the water level gets too high because of the inevitable rainfall we all suffer, it can be drained through an overflow valve.
The water comes from the bottom reservoir, filters through the stones and enriches the soil. It’s straightforward and works excellently.
The plant liner is removable to make planting and cleaning this self-watering trough an easy task.
The Balconera self-watering trough is made from durable, weatherproof plastic and is very lightweight. It can be place on the floor or other surface or hung up. The brackets needed to hang the trough don’t come in the box and must be bought separately
The only downfall I can see with this product is that the trough isn’t that deep and could limit the types of plants you can grow. It is ideal for growing your own herbs though.
- Weather, frost and UV resistant
- Watering system works well
- Water level indicator and overflow valve
- Removable plant liner
- No wall brackets included
- Limited depth
For smaller plants, flowers and herbs, the Balconera self-watering trough works wonders. It’s a shame that the wall brackets aren’t included but they can found online easily enough.
Best self watering Plant Pot
1. Lechuza Premiuim Mini Deltini Self Watering Houseplant & Herb Indoor Planter Pot
If you’re looking to just have a little flowering here and there in your home and not needing a whole trough, this could be the product for you,
Again coming to us from Lechuza, this is the Mini Deltini self-watering plant pot priced at £9.99 in taupe or white and £11.95 if you opt for the pastel violet colour.
The size of the unit is 13 centimeters but the self-watering features take up about a third of that so you have to keep that in mind.
This is a mini self-watering plant pot and is supposed to be used indoors for small plants such as orchids or for growing your own herbs. It is not suitable for larger plants.
If you require a larger pot, Lechuza have the same design in multiple sizes, all the way up to 43cm and all available on Amazon. I didn’t want to waste time reviewing them all as they are essentially the same product, so I chose the smallest size.
Design wise, it is the same as the balconera, only more compact.
It uses the same watering system, is built from the same materials so it shares the weatherproof properties, and has the same drainage valve.
At only 430 grams, this self-watering pot is super lightweight and great for sitting on the inside window sill or on a small table beside the sofa.
Like all Lechuza planters, this product comes with their Lechuza-pon granules. It’s a high-quality, pure mineral plant alternative to regular soil and doesn’t have to be replaced for years.
- Very compact and lightweight
- Perfect for indoors
- Weatherproof, frostproof, UV resistant
- Optimum water level indicator
- Drainage valve
- Comes with Lechuza-pon granules
- Self-watering mechanism takes up a third of the pot
- The smaller sizes are limited to herbs and small plants
These self-watering plant pots work just as well as Luchuza’s self-watering trough. They will help to relieve the burden of remembering to water your plants.
Automatic Watering Systems
For those of you with large gardens, a lack of free time or those who just hate watering plants, an automatic watering system is the way to go.
These are typically a hose system attached to an outdoor tap and spread out around your garden. At certain points there are water outlets whose job it is to release the water and save you having to do it. An automatic water timer is often used to regulate watering frequency.
Of course, setting these systems up takes a bit of time initially, but they will save you a lot in the future.
The different types of water outlet are-
Micro jet/Spray systems– These systems are great for watering smaller areas of plants and flowers. They usually have a radius of no more than a couple of metres and they produce a light spray. Some micro jets come ready to be used and are the most convenient, but buying the parts separately will give you more control of the overall system.
Mini sprinkler systems– Mini sprinklers have a larger spray radius than micro jets and can cover areas up to 5 metres. They distribute water in drops rather than a fine spray and this allows the water to stay around longer before it evaporates. Like the mini jets, these systems can be as simple as sticking sprinkler headed stakes in the ground and attaching a water supply.
Soaker hose system– These come in various sizes and lengths and are good for watering large planted areas such as hedges. It basically works the same as a leaky hose pipe (which is another nickname for these systems) but the water ‘leaks’ in a slow controlled manner to really soak the chosen area.
Drip irrigation systems– These systems use ‘drip emitters’ that are placed next to the base of the plants. These emitters drip small amounts of water directly to the areas where the roots of the plants are, thus saving water and making these systems the most efficient.
Here I’ve reviewed the models that I think are the best for each type-
Automatic Watering Systems Reviews 2019
With saving money being in mind, I’ll start off by having a look at my pick for top drip/ mini spray combination irrigation system. After that I’ll move on to best mini sprinkler system and then my number one soaker hose choice. I’ll finish this automatic watering systems sub-section by selecting a water timer I deemed to be the best available. Let’s get started shall we?
Best Cheap Drip/micro-spray Irrigation System UK
1. OUTERDO 40M Micro Drip Irrigation Kit
This all in one drip irrigation kit comes with everything you need to set up an automatic watering system in your garden,
The box contains- 1 x 2-way connector, 1 x sealing tap, 1 x 1/2″-3/4″ Tap, 1 x universal adapter, 2 x 4/7 plug, 2 x quick connectors, 15 x atomising nozzles, 15 x flat tees, 15 x 4/7 Barbs, 15 x 4/7 barb coupling, 20 x adjustable drippers, 35 x T-connectors, 35 x fixed stems, and a 40m x PVC hose.
It is on sale for just £19.39 with free delivery in the UK.
There are 2 tap connectors in the box, one is to be used with either a ½ inch or ¾ inch threaded tap, and the other connector is universal and can be used with non-threaded taps.
The 40 metre hose gives you the ability to water a large area at the same time. The drip emitters can be adjusted individually, so you can control which plants get more or less water. These emitters can also be switched off one at a time if you think a certain part of your automatic watering system isn’t needed on that day.
This Outer irrigation kit can also be adjusted to work as a micro spray water system. In fact, because the emitters are individually adjusted, you can have some parts of the garden getting drip fed and others getting sprayed.
The kit is made mostly out of plastic so it will not be as durable as metal, but does not feel flimsy. You have the option to hang these emitters up above your plants, and when doing so I thought that the system still performed well and I wasn’t worried about it falling or breaking.
While using this automatic watering system, I did notice one of the connectors leaking a little water. It wasn’t a lot and I solved it easily with a bit of sealing tape.
- Low price
- Full Kit- comes with everything you need
- Easy to set up
- 40 metre hose
- Emitters can be adjusted individually
- Drip or micro-spray
- Made from plastic so won’t be as durable as metal fittings
- One of the connectors leaked a little
This is a very well-priced all-in-one kit that performs its tasks as expected. It is perfect as a first automatic watering system because of how easy it is to set up and use.
Best Cheap Sprinkler UK
1. Aolun R108 Garden Sprinkler
The Aolun R108 garden sprinkler is on sale for £7.99.
For that you get just the sprinkler spray head and nothing else, so you would need to already have a hose or be willing to buy one.
The R108 is an automatic 360 degree rotating sprinkler. It uses the water pressure to make it spin constantly and doesn’t need any other source of propulsion.
The quick connecting system allows easy set up and operation and should have you up and running in no time.
Once operating, the sprinkler can produce a spray diameter distance of 26ft-32ft depending on your home’s water pressure. This product’s maximum pressure threshold is 4 bar, so if you have unusually high water pressure exceeding that, you could damage it.
On the other hand, this sprinkler needs water pressure to help it spin and spray, so the performance will suffer under low levels.
There are two different spray directions, straight or 45 degrees so you can cover more of your garden without missing spots.
The three spraying arms are adjustable for not only angle but also spray range.
- Fast spinning
- 360 degrees
- Adjustable angle and spray range
- Simple and easy to set up
- Doesn’t come with hose or connectors
- Won’t work well with low water pressure
If you’ve got decent water pressure at home, this cheap sprinkler will work wonders. However, you will need to purchase a hose and universal connectors separately.
Best Soaker Hose UK
1. Gardena 1969-20 Soaker Sprinkler Hose
Gardena’s 1969-20 saoker sprinkler hose is made in Germany and comes with a 5 year warranty. It is priced at £29.99 with free UK delivery.
The hose is 15 metres long and comes with one set of fittings to get you off and running.
It is ‘individually adaptable’ and can be cut down to the length you want or extended up to 30 metres if combined with a second hose. Bending the hose is not a task because of its flexibility and this helps to give your garden more of an overall coverage.
There is a hand valve on the end of the hose to control the water flow and regulate pressure.
The slow soaking function of this automatic watering system makes it extremely economical and reduces water usage up to 70 percent when compared to an ordinary garden hose. A good thing in these days of climate change when we all need to do our part.
The supplied fittings are easy to use and leak free. The system is simple to set up and can be used with a gardena water control computer so you can really monitor your water usage and distribution.
I’ve had no problems with this product but I did see one review online that said the hose and become brittle over winter. As with most plastic/rubber gardening products careful storage should fix the this problem.
- Adjustable length
- Good quality connectors supplied
- Economic use of water
- Good quality
- Water flow control valve
- Needs to be properly stored over winter
Although a bit more expensive than some other soaker hoses, the Gardener 1969-20 is a flexible, quality product and would be a great addition to your overall automatic garden watering system.
Best Water timer
1. Orbit 96781 ‘Buddy HF’ Single-Port Digital Tap Timer
A water timer is the best possible way to make sure that your automatic watering system works exactly as you want it to.
You won’t have to worry about plants getting dried out and dying or being flooded because you forgot to turn off the tap because the Orbit Buddy HF digital tap tier will take care of it all for you.
The digital water timer connects to your outdoor tap without any fuss and then all you need to do is program it to start and stop water flow when you want it to. It is really straight forward and there really isn’t any need to use the instructions that come with the water timer.
This water timer has definitely been created to be user friendly. The large LCD screen is clear and easy to read, the programming and controls are simple, and the large dial around the LCD display is well marked.
You can program the Orbit Buddy Hf to water on specific days of the week or at intervals of 6-12 hours. There are four start times to choose from and you can select the watering duration from 1-360 minutes.
There is a built in rain delay feature that will pause your watering schedule for up to 72 hours.
If you want to do some manual watering, you can press the ‘manual’ button and it won’t affect or cancel your current program.
Made to last, this water timer is waterproof, is made from robust materials and has a very long battery life of over 86,400 on/off cycles.
The Orbit Buddy HF digital tap timer can be purchased for £31.99
- Large LCD screen
- Easy controls
- Simple to program
- Manual watering button
- Long lasting battery
- Conserves water
This is, without a doubt, a great water timer from Orbit. It is easy to set up and program and has some useful features. On top of that it is made to last and feels well-constructed.
So, there you have it, a selection of automatic watering systems to make your life easier. In the following section, I’ll show you a couple of good old watering cans for those of you who like it ‘old school’.
Watering Can Reviews 2019
Watering cans have been with us for hundreds of years and are still widely used today. Their simple design makes them easy to use, long lasting and cheap.
With no complicated set up or moving parts, there is a lot less that can go wrong and I think that’s why they remain popular.
Watering cans come in multiple sizes and maximum capacities, a multitude of colours and can be made of metal, ceramic, or more commonly these days, plastic.
Here I have chosen a few and given a brief review of them for you to take a look at.
Best Small/indoor Watering Can UK
1. Elho brussels watering can 1,8ltr
What makes a good indoor watering can?
Well, it should be compact and lightweight. The Elho Brussels watering can is certainly that. It is just under 18cm tall and 33cm wide, and weighs just 195 grams.
Secondly, they shouldn’t be an eyesore to have hanging around.
This watering can delivers in the aesthetic category. It is made of plastic but has a finish that makes it appear as if it was constructed out of ceramic or coated metal.
The design is a classic looking one and this model comes in 6 different colours- white, mint, ivory, black, anthracite (a type of gun-metal grey), and deep marsala which is a nice tone of purple.
Function wise, the Elho Brussels watering can’s narrow spout is perfect for watering pot plants in the home and helps to prevent accidently over soaking them.
The plastic used in its construction is of high quality and should see you watering leak free for a long time to come.
Priced at just under 8 pounds it is neither cheap nor expensive and I would say definitely worth the money.
- Lightweight and compact
- Long narrow spout
- No leaking or dripping
- Multiple colours available
- Beautiful design
Best 5 litre Watering Can
1. Stewart Geli 2463003 5 Litre Essential Watering Can
For a 5 litre watering can, the Stewart Geli is surprisingly compact. It still holds 5 litres of water but the design and lightweight of 2.4 kilograms makes it seem more manageable.
It is made from good quality plastic and you can choose from two colours, red or pink. The pink looked a little too bright for my tastes so I opted for the red.
The funnel of this watering can is long and narrow to help you water those hard to reach parts such as hanging baskets. The lightweight also helps with this.
Included in the box is a spray rose that can be attached to the end of the funnel. This spray rose does a good job of creating a finer spray spread over a wider area. This makes watering more fragile plants not so much as a risk.
This watering can from Stewart is priced at only £4.95 so it is a standard product without any fancy features such as being weatherproof, so you’ll have to store it away for winter.
I wasn’t impressed with the way that the watering can had been packaged either but it didn’t affect the condition upon arrival.
- Spray rose produces a light spray
- Feels compact
- Not frost proof
Best Metal Watering Can
1. Traditional Watering Can Galvanised and Brass 2 Gallon
If you’re looking for a high quality watering can with a classic look, search no further.
This is product is on sale for £19.95 with free UK delivery.
The main selling point of this watering can is the build quality. The main body of the can is made from long lasting, rust resistant, galvanised steel. Be aware though, that this makes it heavier than plastic watering cans of the same size, especially when it is filled with 2 gallons of water.
That being said, the two fitted handles do help with balancing the weight, but if you have any problems with your arms or back, then you should probably look for a good plastic watering can.
The traditional appearance is beautiful and completed by the brass spray rose that gives a nice touch of colour variation.
The spray rose itself screws on tightly to prevent leakage and the fine spray it gives won’t damage your flowers.
- Galvanised steel can
- Brass spray rose
- Dual handles to help balance
- Beautiful classic look
- Great longevity
- Not damaged by weather
- Maybe too heavy for some when full
If you already have a nice watering can but you wish that the spray rose was better, or you lost your old rose, why not take a look at these products-
Best Spray Roses
1. Garden Innovations Watering Rose Set
Available to buy for only £4.95, this set is very good value for money.
The set comprises of 4 watering roses that you can screw onto your old plastic bottles, essentially turning them into recycled plastic watering cans.
The watering roses are made to fit most plastic bottle sizes ranging from small 300 ml bottles to big 3 litre bottles. Personally I found that some types of bottles fitted better than others so it’s worth trying out a few variations to find what’s best. Larger bottles didn’t work as well as smaller ones because of the air intake.
The 4 spray roses comprise of 2 fine holed roses that produce a light spray, a medium holed rose for standard spray and drenching, and a rose that produces a single water jet stream for blasting weeds.
These watering roses are a great way to make use of your plastic waste and it’s so easy to construct yourself a nice watering tool for your pot plants and such.
- Great for recycling old bottles
- Fun for kids to use
- 4 different spray patterns
- Low price
- Works better with some bottles better than others
- Bigger bottles tend to take too much air in
Water Butt Reviews 2019
While we are on the subject of recycling and doing our best for the environment, I’d like to take a moment to review a couple of water butts. Water butts are used to collect and store rainwater that is used to water the garden with later.
Best 100 litre Water Butt
1. BeGreen 100L Capacity Mini Rainsaver Water Butt Kit
Manufacturers BeGreen are selling this water butt kit for £29.99 at the moment and offering free delivery.
Included in the kit is the 100 litre water butt, a rain diverter which basically acts like guttering to send the water to the butt, a stand to keep the butt stable, and a hose fit tap.
BeGreen have tried to make this product as environmentally friendly as possible and have used recycled plastic for the construction of the butt, lid and stand.
The various components of this water butt kit are made in England and are of good quality. The hose tap provided is compatible with most brand name hosepipes and their connectors, the butt stand has molded, angled stiffeners to strengthen them, and the rain diverter can work with square or round downpiping.
One flaw with this water butt kit is that, because of the design, the stand needs to be on very flat ground in order to remain stable when the butt is full.
There is also a small hole on the side of the butt that serves no purpose but to leak water. This is easily rectified with a bit of sealant and doesn’t affect the operation of the butt.
- Full kit comes with everything you need
- Recycled plastic
- Good quality components
- The hose tap fits most hoses
- Stand needs to be on flat ground to work properly
- There is a hole that needs sealing on the side
Best 200 litre Water Butt
1. Harcostar 227 litre Water Butt Kit
As with the review above, this is a complete water butt kit and comes with the butt, tap, lid, base and rain diverter kit. It is priced at £39.99 on Amazon with free delivery.
British based Harcostar are a well-known and well trusted brand of water butts. They strive to bring us quality products and they have managed to do so once again with this model.
The butt is made of high quality recycled materials and can hold a maximum of 227 litres of rainwater.
It is easy to set up and comes pre-drilled and has inlets and stoppers on both sides, and also two threaded tap holes so you can choose where you want the tap.
The tap can be screwed in from the outside, which is a nice change from a lot of Harcostar’s competitor’s water butts that require you to secure it from the inside.
The kit includes all the necessary fittings needed to Harcostars excellent, enclosed rain diverter to a water downpipe. The universal rain diverter can connect with plastic downpipe of almost any size.
The childproof lid is secured by a spring loaded fastening clip, is easy to fit and locks/unlocks with ease.
This water butt hold 227 litres which is a decent amount, but if you require more, you can attach another butt to this one without too much hassle.
The only gripe I have about this excellent product is that the tap is situated quite high up from the bottom of the butt, so the tank needs to fill up a little way before you can use it.
- Holds 227 litres
- Full kit comes with everything you need
- Fastening clip on lid
- Excellent enclosed rain diverter
- Pre-drilled and easy to set up
- Can be connected to a second unit
- Made from recycled materials
- Tap is situated far from the bottom
That brings to an end this article on all things water related. I think we did a good job at covering most of the options available and also gave you a closer look at some of the top products on sale in the UK today.
We have similar articles with reviews on many other garden related products, so please take a look at any that you are interested in.