One of the most frequent questions I get is, “How (often/much/etc) should I water my garden?” And the short answer is, “I can’t tell you that.” Garden Watering can be problematic. There is no magic number of how often or how long a garden needs to be watered because a garden is a living, growing entity with ever shifting conditions. Every irrigation system and method is different, the soils are different, the plants are different, the exposure is different and the list goes on.
I am always afraid to give people exact instructions with times – I recently met with a client that was over watering his pots BIG TIME. I was refurbishing the plants and creating new container designs and found them sitting in easily 3″ of water! They were so water logged that the soil just fell away, some of the roots are not going to make it. He was watering each day regardless of whether there was water in the saucer of the pot or not. Didn’t even look. Now I told him to cut back to every two or three days, but I’m scared that he’s going to under water next. I gave him some of the info below – hopefully he was listening.
The best advice I can offer you is to visit your garden often and learn it’s heartbeat. Look at your plants and at your soil and learn the signs. Are the plants drooping and the soil is dry when you put your finger in the soil (yes, put your finger IN the soil – it won’t bite)? Then it probably needs water. If your plants are drooping but the soil is moist, then you have either over watered or, it’s just plain HOT as HECK out there.
Let’s look at the leaves, an under watered plant usually has leaves that are crispy and sometimes brown – under water shows up as wilted and more often are yellow. And don’t underestimate the value of mulch. Yes, it breaks down, yes you have to replace it, yes the lawn janitors might blow it away with their stupid blowers, or the wind whip it up, but it is so worth the investment. Which cost more – all the plants and your time or a few bags of mulch?
This poor Alstroemeria, missed a watering or two right after it was planted, but it will come back. The water has now been corrected, time to trim the dead foliage, give it some Super Thrive, and talk to it every day (when you are out checking on your plants.)
If you live in Santa Clarita and have one of the WBIC timers, you should be good to go as this baby will adjust based on the temperatures of your area. Think about getting one if you haven’t already, but even if you do – make sure that you pay attention to your garden and the plants that live there with you. Here’s a link to the program for Santa Clarita.
Water – it keeps us alive, but sometimes baffles us.
I enjoy collaborating with my clients to create the garden that suits them best. I can design for you, design and implement, or by popular demand – help you sort out the next steps you want to take in your garden. If you are interested in any or all of the above call me at 661-917-3521 or visit my website to contact me.