Watering

ImpatiensPart of my Spring gardening rituals is getting ready to water. Watering is an important part of gardening, but it’s tricky. I want to be wise in how I use the water. This is part of my partnership I want to have by working with nature for the benefit of all. Water is a precious resource. It’s not enough to just put water on the plants – I don’t want to waste water.

I like using soaker hoses because I can place them where I want the water to go without unnecessary run-off. I check & set up my soaker hoses, making sure any kinks or tears are repaired. Sometimes I need to reorient the hoses to be more efficient. I like to water as early in the morning as possible; this encourages the most soaking in of the water into the soil and the least chance of evaporation. So after I set up the hoses, I set the timer and make sure it’s running properly.

This post is about watering annuals. Annuals are those flowers and plants that usually live for part of the year, then die. You generally need to replace annuals every year. Some of my favorite examples of an annual are impatiens, geraniums, pansies, fuchsias, etc. Most annuals have a shallow root system. Generally, the roots are going to be in the top 12 inches of soil. Then the roots spread around, close to the plant. The general guideline for annuals is to look and check the soil often. You want the soil to be moist 1 – 2 inches below the surface.

Here’s what to look for to know when to water your annuals.

  • Is the soil dry below the surface? (get your fingers dirty to check!)
  • Leaves look tired or dull. (most plants will die or stop growing if they dry out)
  • The stems start to sag. The flowers are drooping and dry out faster than usual.

Please comment if you have any questions.

 

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