Q: My family has been “showering with buckets” to collect bathwater for months now. We pour the water around plants in our full sun beds. I’ve begun to notice some plants showing yellowish leaves.
A: My guess is that the plants are getting too much water and may be suffering from root rot. Established shrubs and flowers usually don’t need watering in winter. Though our rain is sporadic, it’s enough to keep them happy. Of course, the yellow foliage could also be the normal process of shrubs shedding older leaves. Stop watering anything except newly planted evergreens like magnolia, Leyland cypress, big hollies, etc. and give your family a break from the buckets.