4 Tips To Help Water Your Plants Wisely
4 Tips to Help Water Your Plants Wisely
Now that your garden beds are planted and summer heat is upon us, it’s a good time to pay attention to the watering needs of our plants. Here are some tips to help you meet your plants moisture needs as well as helping you conserve water.
Water in the morning, deeply and slowly
It’s best to water in the morning, not in peak heat. Otherwise, the water will evaporate too quickly and not reach the roots. Focus on the roots, the roots need the water not the leaves. Plus, any water on the leaves has time to dry. Otherwise, it can create an environment for disease to develop or insects to make a new home. But, if your plant looks under stress and it is middle of the day, don’t wait.
Keep in mind, plants in containers need more water than plants in the ground. Water them until a small water drips out of the drainage holes. On hot days, they might need to be watered twice a day. Water long enough so that it reaches the roots. Leaves do not need the water, it’s the root zone that does.
Learn the signs of overwatering
Wilting leaves are not always caused by high heat or under-watering. Some plants will wilt if you over-water.
You can use a meter to test the moisture in the soil or simply test with your own finger. Push your index finger down into the soil just past your first knuckle. If it is moist, you can probably wait longer to water.
Mulch your flower beds
Adding mulch around your plants helps slow evaporation from the soil and reduces runoff. Plus, mulch has other benefits for your landscape beds. It improves the soil as it breaks down. Mulch also helps prevent weeds from sprouting and protects against temperature changes. This is the brand of mulch our Garden Associates recommend most often, Scotts Nature Scape Mulch
Install a drip irrigation system
They help manage the amount of water, preventing water loss due to evaporation and overwatering. Drip irrigation is a low-pressure, low-volume method. Water goes directly into the ground, delivering it directly to the roots, keeping them moist. It uses less water than other watering methods.
Another benefit of drip irrigation is that it eliminates environmental conditions that welcome insects or promote the spread of disease that can appear if there is excess moisture. It also helps conserve soil nutrients.