General Garden Maintenance – Watering

A successful garden is the result of many factors, one of the most important of which is adequate water. It is essential that you know how much water to give your plants and vegetables, striking a balance that will benefit the entire garden. Early morning watering is best for an established garden. If plants wilt, be sure to check the soil and narrow down the problems before watering.

There are several different ways in which to water a garden, from a watering can to a hose, to a hand sprayer to irrigation hoses and sprinkler systems. No matter which you decide to use, you need to know your plants and how much water they need and tolerate for optimal growth. Over-and under watering can be devastating to your garden, though it is often difficult to tell which one is the problem because they cause the same result: root rot. One such sign of either is wilted leaves.

Transplants and newly sown seeds need to be kept constantly moist for the first few weeks, so water your freshly planted garden lightly every time the surface is dry, or twice a day in hot weather. It’s preferable to water early in the morning, and then in the early evening, following the hottest part of the day.

Seedlings should emerge from the ground in a week or two. If the weather is cool, it may take a bit longer. Transplants take a while to recover once they have been planted. You will know they are doing fine when you see them start to grow, usually within one to two weeks.

Once your garden is established, water in the early morning hours, though, try to avoid sprayers because you don’t want to scorch leaves as the sun warms. Irrigation hoses or watering from below is the best bet and will not only prevent many fungal disease problems, but will also encourage deep roots, which will make your plants more hardy and less likely to suffer when deprived of water.

If a plant starts to wilt, don’t assume that it is drooping because it needs water. Check the soil first. Plants can wilt for a variety of reasons. You may do more harm than good if you water first and then try to narrow down problems later.

Water is the most important factor in a successful garden. It is essential that you know how much water to give your plants and vegetables. Once your garden is established, water in the early morning hours. Do not assume that a plant is drooping because it needs water. Check the soil and narrow down problems before you water.

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