Watering is a must-do job in the garden to keep plants happy and healthy.
With plants rapidly growing and blooming abundantly in the warm summer sun, there is an urge (and need) to return the joy they bring and nurture our thirsty plants.
Providing your plants with enough water can be tricky business – but fear not, we’re here to share our top watering tips for a luscious green garden!
When In the Day Should I Water?
- Water early in the morning or late in the evening when soil is cooler. Avoid watering in the hot midday sun, as water will quickly evaporate before reaching the roots – where it is needed most.
How Often Should I Water?
- Water less frequently but more thoroughly, to allow water to soak deeply.
- Plants can suffer when the soil dries out or becomes waterlogged, so checking the moisture levels will help identify when you need to get your watering can out. Insert a wooden dowel (or your fingers) a few inches into the soil. Moist soil will stick to the dowel when you pull it out. If it is clean, it’s a good sign it’s time to water!
- Larger plants, and those that are newly planted, will need more water.
- Potted plants will need watering more frequently than those in borders, as they are prone to drying out quicker. Most containers will generally need watering daily in the summer when conditions are hot and dry.
- For a rough guide, in the first year, most shrubs and herbaceous perennials will need watering 1-2 times a week during their growing season, increasing to 2-3 times a week during periods of drought and extreme heat. In the years after, the amount you water in hot weather can reduce to 1-2 times a week.
Where Should I Water?
- Water plants evenly at the base so it can soak down and reach the roots.
- Avoid wetting leaves too much, as this can cause disease if left wet overnight or slight burn marks in the day.
What Should I Water With?
- Rainwater is an excellent source of water for plants and should be the go-to if possible. Collecting rainfall in something like a water butt is not only great for plants but great for saving water, too!
- If you have a large amount of watering to do, using a hose will save time, but make sure to only use the water that you need.
Top tip: Mulching plants is a great way to help the soil retain moisture.