When it comes to watering plants, the best advice is simple: Water infrequently but deeply, and let the soil be your guide. How often should i water my plants ?
To start, it’s best to group plants with similar water needs. Some plants have greater water needs than others.
Once established, for instance, California native plants and even some Mediterranean herbs such as rosemary and thyme don’t like much water. Roses and vegetables, however, are generally thirstier, and require consistent water.
You need to create different zones, so plants with similar needs go together.
How often should plants be watered?
Water once or twice per week, using enough water to moisten the soil to a depth of about 6 inches each time. It’s okay if the soil’s surface dries out between waterings, but the soil beneath should remain moist.
Water at specific times
This rule counts especially during the warmer months of the year, as when you water in the afternoon much of it will evaporate in the heat of the sun.
Instead, water in the evening, at night or early in the morning to ensure the plants can sufficiently supply themselves with water before the next day’s heat arrives.
How much water do plants need a day?
Plants don’t need daily watering. Instead, water deeply but less frequently. Deep waterings allow the water to seep beneath the roots, which encourages the roots to grow downward.
Keep the leaves dry
Wet leaves become diseased leaves, and if they’re left wet overnight, leaf-mould diseases will be almost guaranteed to occur.
Leaves that are made wet in the sun develop slight burn marks a well, through the burning glass effect of the water droplets.
Watering outdoor vs. indoor plants
Outdoor plants typically require less water than indoor plants, since they get rainwater every so often. However, if you live in a hot, sunny, dry area, you may need to give your outdoor plants more attention than your indoor ones. Outdoor container plants tend to dry out quicker than those in the ground.
The same general rules apply for watering outdoor plants as indoor ones: Make sure the soil is dry to the touch first, and soak it thoroughly until water starts running out of your pot’s drainage hole. For garden plants, water thoroughly, until the surrounding soil is moist. You don’t have to worry about overwatering plants in the garden as much, but wilted leaves could be a sign you’ve gone too far.
Signs of Root Rot (And What To Do About It)
One of the biggest red flags that means your plant is not OK can be signs of root rot. Rot can show up when your plant has had its water needs oversaturated (AKA too much watering) or when the soil has fungus in it. The fungus can hang around in soil totally dormant until too much watering causes it to wake up and start flourishing. Rot doesn’t mean a plant is passed its sell-by date, but it does need a little rescue mission to get it back on track. Here are some signs and symptoms that your plants could be suffering from rot…
- Wilting leaves
- Smaller twisted leaves than expected
- Leaves turning yellow
- Black mushy roots
The easiest way to tell if you have root rot is to pick the plant up and take a peek at what’s going on underneath and use your finger to check how the plant roots feel. Healthy roots look strong and white, sick roots can be brown or black, may feel soft and spongy or mushy and may just fall off when touched. If you have suspected rot here’s how to save your affected houseplants…
First off, get on it immediately, time is of the essence when it comes to keeping your plants from keeling over due to rot.
Remove from the soil and gently wash the roots underwater. You want to try and get rid of as much soil as possible.
Grab some tools like shears or scissors (depending on the size of your plants) and start trimming away the affected roots. You may need to trim back quite a lot to get back to healthy basics. If you do have to strip back a lot, you may also want to prune the leaves by around a third or even half in severe cases. Having fewer leaves to support can help the plant to recover quickly as it will put all that energy into growing healthy instead.
Get rid of any soil mix left in the pot of your container plant and wash the bottom of the pot out properly. Your plants need new soil to recover. If you have been dealing with a really bad case of rot you can also dip the remaining roots in fungicide to make sure that no traces of fungus can be left clinging.
Finally, repot in fresh soil and make sure it has good irrigation and drainage so water doesn’t get the chance to accumulate.
Check your plants and the soil daily to determine whether you plants need more water. While young seedlings may not use a lot of water, as your plants grow their water needs increase.
While most plants prefer soil that dries slightly before watering again, not all plants have the same watering needs. Always check the watering instructions for your specific plants.