Seasonal Color Reminders
Water Initially – Once they are planted, water every day for the first two weeks to help roots get established. Then water every other day for the next two weeks. Then incorporate the following.
Water Deeply – Give them a good, long drink – optimally, until water runs out the hole in the bottom of your container. Depending on the size of your pot, many of the roots will be towards the bottom and need water too. Watering deeply actually encourages roots to grow toward the bottom of the pot, which is better for plants.
Check Moisture Level – Before watering ensure the plants really need it. Oftentimes the top of the soil can appear dry even though just below the soil line it is still moist. Stick your finger into the soil all the way to the second knuckle. If it feels dry at your fingertip, your plants need water.
Know your Plants – Most plants prefer to live in moist soil – not wet, just damp. This is possible with modern potting mixes, which are designed for good drainage. However, different plants have very different moisture needs.
As a rule of thumb, flowering annuals don’t like to get too dry. Succulents like to be slightly dry. Vegetables – particularly those that are juicy (tomatoes, cucumbers, melons) – like to be kept moist and need a great amount of water. Some herbs like rosemary, thyme, basil, dill, oregano, cilantro like to be a bit dry between waterings. This will actually develop better flavors. Other herbs like parsley, sage, and chives, like more moisture.
Water in the morning – According to Horticulture Magazine, plant’ roots are most receptive to watering in the morning and never during midday sun. It is also better to avoid watering in the evening, but if you get home from work and your plants are thirsty indeed, give them a good drink.
Water the Soil, Not the Leaves – It turns out that some plants (especially those with hairy leaves) are susceptible to sunburn if planted in direct sunlight and left with water on their leaves. Water droplets can act like mini-magnifying glasses and burn the plant. Shade plants do not escape, either. Prolonged wetness on these leaves can lead to increased risk of fungus, mildew, and other diseases.
Don’t Rely on the Rain – Even if you think that a rain shower has sufficiently watered your plants, still check them. Sometimes a plant’s foliage and flowers can act like an umbrella, preventing water from getting into the soil and quenching the thirsty roots.
Don’t Let Soil Dry Out Completely – We have added fresh potting soil to each container and tilled completely. Over time many potting mixes become tough and won’t absorb water efficiently. Sometimes during the growing season your potting mix may get too dry and pull away from the sides of your containers. If this happens you’ll notice that water just flows over the soil, down the sides of the pot and out the bottom, leaving your plants gasping for a drink.
But don’t fret! If it’s a relatively small pot, simply submerge it in a large container of water, taking it out when it has stopped bubbling. For a larger pot, poke holes in the soil with a pencil or screwdriver and then give it a good drink, making sure the water is penetrating the soil and not just flowing down the sides.
Don’t Assume Once is Enough – Depending on elements such as heat, wind, and the size of the containers, you may need to water your plants more than once a day. Terra cotta pots, hanging baskets of coconut liners, and metal pots can dry out extremely f
ast on a hot, windy summer day. Over The season you will recognize which containers need to be checked more frequently.