Last weekend I put up a 3.6m x 6m shade cloth over the vegetables.
That's 12ft x 18ft for those still with Imperial connections.
But I needed the shade, plants were getting burnt. And when I watered the soil was dusty, even though I had watered it the previous evening. And it's not even summer here yet.
Since I put up the shade cloth, we have had drizzle, showers and even the occasional rain.
Wish I had done it earlier.
Mind you, after all this rain, the garden is just dusty if you turn it over with a spade. So the rain has only soaked down about 200mm (8") so far. But it is still welcome.
And, hopefully, the shade will keep some of the water in a little longer.