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When to Water
The best time to water plants is in the morning. You should water before temperatures rise to give plants and flower gardens enough water to get through the day. Watering during the day causes loss through evaporation. Watering in the evening or at night can cause problems with fungus and mold growth. Plants usually don’t need daily watering.
How Much Water
How much water to supply your plants depends on the type of plant and your soil. Established landscape plants, shrubs and trees usually need little supplemental watering because their roots reach deeper into the soil. Other plants and flowers with shallow roots need the soil soaked to a depth of approximately 12 inches. Soil type effects how deeply water penetrates.
The Best Watering Methods
Drip irrigation is the best all-purpose watering method. It delivers the water slowly, so even heavy clay soil can accept it. The water goes straight into the ground, unlike sprinklers where you lose a percentage to evaporation. Drip irrigation also requires little time after the initial set-up.
All you have to do is turn it on or have it set on a timer for the best time to water plants. Drip irrigation is environmentally friendly, saving as much as 60 percent in water usage. You can use soaker hoses or specially designed kits for drip irrigation.
Checking Water Depth
To know if you applied enough water, use a small hand trowel to dig down into the soil. Some trowels have inches marked on them, but you can also use a ruler. If the soil is not wet at the depth you need, you will have to water longer. Keep track of how long it takes to soak the soil to about a foot. Then the next time you water, you have a baseline for how long it should take. Check again when you have drastic weather changes and adjust as needed.
Want to garden efficiently, saving water and time, and improving the strength of your plants? Know both how to water and when is the best time for flower gardens and deep-rooted plants.
- ARBORICULTURE: WATERING PLANTS https://cals.arizona.edu/pubs/garden/mg/arboriculture/watering.html
- Watering Home Gardens and Landscape Plants http://cru.cahe.wsu.edu/CEPublications/EB1090/EB1090.pdf
- Watering Correctly Saves Time, Money and Plants http://extension.illinois.edu/hortihints/0108a.html