South East Water is asking its customers to share some sunshine outside their homes by planting its free sunflower seeds.
The sunflowers when blooming in late summer will help to brighten up window boxes, front gardens, streets and whole neighbourhoods in addition to providing some winter food for the birds.
To kick start its #sunflowerchallenge during Water Saving Week, the company is giving away 5,000 packets of sunflower seeds to help produce a ray of sunshine in its water supply area of parts of Kent, Sussex, Surrey, Berkshire and Hampshire.
With gardening enjoying a resurgence during the lockdown months, the company is using the #sunflowerchallenge to show that gardens can blossom with water-efficient plants taking centre stage.
David Hinton, Chief Executive Officer Designate, said: “Sunflowers say summer like no other plant along with being a symbol for hope and happiness.
“A sunflower turns to follow the movement of the sun across the sky east to west, and then returns at night to face the east, ready again for the morning sun.
“We are hoping our customers will take up our #sunflowerchallenge combining this symbol of hope with a desire to use water efficiently.”
Gardening expert and broadcaster Jean Griffin has given her support to the #sunflowerchallenge. Jean said: “One common mistake that gardeners make is overwatering their plants.
“Plants actually do not need to be constantly watered as they should be given time to grow a strong root structure which in term actually makes the plant water-efficient.
“The sunflower is a good plant to show this in action as, although they need water to germinate and you can do this using a watering, once in the final growing space, the plant will need very little water.
“After all in the South of France, sunflowers stretch for miles growing with minimal attention.”
South East Water’s customers can apply for their free sunflower seeds by visiting https://www.savewatersavemoney.co.uk/southeast/free-water-saving-products