Plant Care: Watering Tips
How much water does my plant need? How frequently should I be watering my plants? What if it rains?
Pause. Take a breath. Here's where the worrisome questions stop.
If we've recently visited your home and installed plants into your landscape, we will provide them with plenty of water initially. However, this will not last them through maturity. Your plants will need your help to establish. Because newly installed plants are in the beginning stages of establishing their fibrous roots (roots that seek out and secure resources like water, nutrients, etc.), it's important to provide them with water regularly until they develop a better established root system. Surprisingly, you don't need too much water; an inch will do. And if we did provide the install, we more than likely installed mulch. Mulch will help in this scenario to retain moisture. Hopefully you're already feeling better about your plants' watering needs.
So we know a newly installed plant will need water, just about an inch, and we know mulch helps to retain that moisture too but how often should we be providing water? Unless it rains, water every 2-3 days. When watering, remember to focus on the roots/soil and avoid watering the foliage. When watering shrubs and perennials, allow for 30 seconds of watering per plants unless the area is very dry. If the area is dry, allow for more time. Trees, on the other hand, should be watered for at least 1 minute. An easy way to check to see if your plants are receiving enough (or perhaps too much) water is by pressing your finger into the soil. If your finger comes out with soil residue attached, your soil moisture is adequate. If it comes out dry, please provide the plant with water.
Now. What about the case where the absence of water isn't the problem? What if we're watering too much? Maybe you're saying, "How the heck am I supposed to know if my plants received an inch of water?!" No fear. Rain gauges are very helpful in telling the amount of moisture your plants received naturally. However, there are other ways to tell if your plants received too much water. Discoloration, drooping and wilted leaves (even though the soil is wet) are signs that the plant is being over-watered. Simply cut back on the amount of water you supply to the plant. You can also aid the plant by aerating the soil around the roots. Use a stick or something similar and press it gently into the soil around the roots. This helps to supply oxygen to the roots. When over-watering occurs, it impacts the amount of oxygen available to the roots.
We hope you find these simple tips helpful. But hey, the conversation doesn't have to end here. If you have more questions, visit our Watering Tips page for more helpful information!