When and How Often to Water Your Plants | Direct Energy Blog

When and How Often to Water Your Plants

Gardening is a hobby that you can spend a lifetime learning about. Seasons change, seeds fail or thrive, and just when you think you know it all, you realize how much there still is to learn. Direct Energy’s Gardening Series is a follow-along guide to embrace the beauty and challenges involved in being a gardener. As a craft that requires patience, creativity, and endurance, gardening can be enjoyed by those of all ages, and is one of the most satisfying ways to spend an early morning or late afternoon. Follow along as we show you how to begin, which herbs grow the best, and other tips on how to plant a garden that will flourish under your care.

Watering at the right time of day and at the right frequency is important for a thriving garden. These watering tips will help you stay on track with your garden’s needs:

  • The type of plant will affect where it needs to be placed to retain water.
  • Watering at the right time of day will help your plants thrive longer.
  • Garden plants, outdoor potted plants and indoor potted plants have different watering needs.

Sunshine, soil nutrition, patience and water all go hand in hand when it comes to raising a successful and beautiful garden.

Oftentimes when plants fail, it can be as a result of either too much water, or a lack thereof. The key to knowing what a plant requires is to understand its needs before planting it in the ground or into a pot.

If it’s the sort of plant that loves to stay moist and thrives in shady locations such as ferns, then don’t plant them in a wide open space with lots of sunlight where the heat from the sun will evaporate the moisture. If it’s a succulent or cactus variety, then you would be safe to plant it in a sunny area with sandy soil that won’t hold water.

Planting native varieties always guarantees your plants are water wise, and that the climate you’re growing in is successful for your garden.

When and How Often to Water Your Plants | Direct Energy Blog

Time of Day to Water Your Garden

It’s best to water your plants and garden between the hours of 10 am and 5 pm, especially in the spring and summer months.

The reason for this is that during the day, and especially during those hot summer temperatures, sprinklers, irrigation and water from hand held hoses and cans is often evaporated by the heat of day, wasting precious water.

Also during the heat of day, a rubber hose can heat up from the sun and cause warm water to come out. 

Certain plants with tender rootstock such as impatiens, cannot handle the combination of water and sun. Together, they make the water too hot, and boil the roots which causes the plant too much trauma.

If you can get up with the birds and take your cup of coffee out into the garden and water, that is ideal.

How Often to Water Your Garden

How often you put the hose on your garden depends on what is planted. Some species of plants need more water than others, and fruit trees typically require more water than most others to produce flowers and in turn trees.

If you are experiencing stretches of drought and lack of rain, then try to turn your sprinklers on once a week. You will know over time which plants require more water than others. Like anything, it takes time and eventually intuition to know what needs more water when.

When and How Often to Water Your Plants | Direct Energy Blog

How Often to Water Outside Potted Plants

Potted plants aren’t pulling moisture from the ground, so they tend to dry out faster.

Be sure to water your potted flowers, especially those that are annuals, at least once to twice a week. You can also give them a liquid fertilizer once a month. This ensures that their roots are getting the nutrition they need to keep producing those beautiful flowers.

The same rule applies with your in-ground garden. It’s best to water potted plants either in the early morning or at dusk to protect their tender roots from burn and prevent the moisture from evaporating.

How Often to Water Indoor Plants

Indoor plants, for the most part, don’t need to be watered but once every two weeks.

A great rule of thumb with most plants is that they will let you know when they’re thirsty by hanging their heads, and possibly curling their leaves. You want to water them before they reach this stage, though. 

Place your finger about a half an inch into the soil, and see if it’s moist. If it’s bone dry, then it needs a water. One way to give an indoor plant a good drink is to put it in the bathtub and let the faucet drip slowly for at least an hour. Often times the soil that indoor plants are planted in is very porous and will drain the soil quickly. A slow drip like this will provide it with the water it needs.