He may have wowed judges at Chelsea and impressed international pop stars with his wonderful landscapes, but an award winning gardener has failed to find favour with some by sparking a rebellion against the controversial hosepipe ban.

After planting thousands of pounds worth of foliage for his latest client, Warwickshire garden designer Paul Dyer fears his hard work will die.

The 59-year-old from Shottery, Stratford-upon-Avon, has attacked the water companies for imposing the ban which will see homes in the South-east and Thames Valley turning off pipes and picking up watering cans.

Mr Dyer, a 14-times gold medal winner at Chelsea Flower Show, travels the country designing gardens, specialising in wildlife landscapes and water features.

He fears businesses like his could dry up, with clients putting off turfing and large planting because of the lack of water available on tap.

"There are turf companies which lay huge amounts of turf for people but I can't see anybody wanting to risk having a lawn laid in the Thames Water area so firms are going to go bust," he said.

"I have just finished a job in Gloucestershire which is in the Thames Water area and did my fourth stage of planting. They have spent £50,000 on plants. Are they expected to let these die or will they just face a £1,000 fine? Over the past year they have spent £280,000 on planting and they can't possibly water the plants without the aid of a hose."

Mr Dyer said he would urge all gardeners to flout the law, claiming the shortage was the fault of the water companies rather than with any drought.

He said Thames Water had sold off reservoirs for house building and had not enough adequate storage to capture rain fall.

"Fellow gardeners, it's time to go to war and rebel against these hosepipe bans by watering your precious lawns and plants.

"The authorities can make an example of some people and fine them up to £1,000, but, faced with a massed protest, what can they do?"

His rallying call comes after TV gardener Monty Don urged gardeners to lobby the Government for a change in the current law, which allows the use of hosepipes to fill swimming pools but not to water plants or lawns.

Robin Markwell, spokesman for Thames Water, said: "We do live in something of an urban desert around London.

It is drier here than in Istanbul, Addis Ababa and Dallas in Texas. We don't receive very much rainfall and what we do get we collect and store 55 per cent of it, which is very high, especially when in Wales the figure is below ten per cent.

"We would plead with people to understand the need for this ban. We are reliant on people keeping hosepipes in the shed."

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