Water is a critical ingredient to sustaining life, and all living things are made up of cells filled with water. Generally speaking, plants contain 70% to 95% water, and the wood part of trees contains 30% to 70% water. Plants consume some of the water during their growth and only timely replenishment of water can maintain the various functions of growth.
With 55% of our households engaged in gardening activities, watering is a common practice that requires an unexpected amount of skill. Different seasons and plant species require different styles of water. Wise watering can achieve twice the result with half the effort, but improper watering can directly lead to plant atrophy or even death.
1、Different Plant Species Depend on Water to Different Degrees
Common garden plants can be divided into two categories: woody plants and herbaceous plants. Common woody plants include Gooseberry, Camellia, Maple, Poplar, Hibiscus, etc. Common herbaceous plants include Violet, Peony, Sunflower, Banana Tree, Pine Cone Daisy, etc.
Woody plants have well-developed xylem in their stems. As the plants grow, the diameter of the stems will gradually thicken and have strong support, which can be subdivided into trees, shrubs and woody vines. Herbaceous plants have soft woody bodies and can be divided into monocotyledonous herbs, dicotyledonous herbs and herbaceous vines depending on the leaf veins.
Generally speaking, the watering needs of herbaceous plants will be greater than those of woody plants. Ferns and aquatic plants require abundant water during the growing period, while polyphytes require less water. The amount of watering required varies depending on the plant species, so understanding the characteristics of the plant is the first step in watering.
2、Different Seasons Have Different Needs for Water
In spring and autumn, most plants are in a state of growth and have a greater demand for water. However, the temperature often appears to be unstable from high to low, so water should be supplemented appropriately according to the change of temperature.
The high temperature in summer accelerates the physiological activities of plants, transpiration is strong, and the water absorption rate of plant roots cannot keep up with the evaporation rate of plant plants, which will cause the water balance to be out of balance and prompt the plants to wilt. Therefore, compared to other seasons, watering is more frequent in summer. Avoid watering in the midday heat as much as possible; water droplets remaining on the leaves can easily cause burns.
In winter, when the temperature is lower, water evaporates from the soil at a slower rate and the plants enter a dormant period with a lower demand for water, watering should be strictly controlled to ensure that the plants have sufficient dormancy. It is worth noting that the temperature is too low in the morning and evening in winter, and choosing these two time periods for watering can easily cause the plant roots to freeze and die, so it is more appropriate to choose noon for watering.
3、Different Growth Stages have Different Needs for Water
The initial growth stage happens when plants break out of the soil is known as the seedling stage. At this stage, the amount of water in the soil has a direct impact on the cultivation of strong seedlings. When the soil water content is low, the root system will grow abundantly to absorb more water to ensure the normal growth of seedlings. A higher soil water content will weaken the absorption of the root system, and the seedlings will become weak rootstocks. Therefore, it is best to wait until the soil is completely dry before watering in order to develop the seedlings' adaptability.
Adequate watering is necessary to ensure that the plant flourishes, but it is important not to water blindly, which can lead to root rot. Depending on the growth habit of the plant, the watering principle should be adopted. For water-loving plants, water thoroughly when the soil is dry 1 inch below the soil surface; for drought-tolerant plants, water thoroughly 2 days after the soil surface is dry. In short, it is important to maintain a well-developed root system throughout the growing process with proper hydration and regular supplemental fertilizer to help the plant grow quickly.
Flowering and fruiting stage
Once the plant enters the budding and flowering stage, the frequency of watering should be determined according to the flowering and fruiting situation. The method of watering is similar to that of the vigorous growth period. If the soil surface is dry, water thoroughly, and adjust the frequency according to the growth of the plant.
Finally, the plant will enter the dormant period which allows the plant to recuperate. This period will cease efforts in growth, will allow leaves fall and wilt, and the need for water and fertilizer is relatively low. For example, in the case of azaleas, watering should be done once every 2 days during the peak growth period and once every 10 days during the dormant period. (The specific amount of watering and the frequency of days should be adapted to the specific environment, temperature and humidity, and soil conditions.)
Generally speaking, soil humidity is between 12% and 15%, which means that the soil is in a state of water shortage, so timely watering is necessary.
Depending on the growth period of the plant, the standard value should be adjusted to suit the growth habit of the plant. If you are unable to determine whether the soil moisture condition requires watering, you can use RainPoint Smart Garden Soil Moisture Sensor to monitor the soil moisture content and store the data in the cloud and analyze it online through internet technology.
It can also be linked to the Smart Garden Water Timer, which allows you to set the soil moisture alarm value to control when the valve opens and closes. In other words, when you set the minimum and maximum humidity values, the Smart Irrigation Timer valve will automatically start watering when the soil humidity drops to the lowest value, and will stop watering when it reaches the highest value you set.
Whether you're a novice or a professional gardener, the power of this tool is always there to make things easier. You can pick up the garden products you need most on the Rainpoint website to keep your garden in top shape all year round.
Methods of water vary depending on your region, season, and plants available. Keeping the soil moist all the time is not exactly good for plant growth. Properly extending the frequency of watering and leaving the soil in a dry state occasionally can also promote plant roots and improve the drought resistance of plants. So, please make a wise watering plan according to proper research and counsel from your local nursery!