How do I best water plants?
Watering plants and trees can be done in many different ways. The method differs per situation. In this story we make a distinction between plants and trees that are in a pot or tub and plants in the open ground or solid ground.
In general, plants in the ground need less water than plants in pots. This is because plants and trees in the open ground can penetrate deep into the ground with their roots and therefore have a larger package of water at their disposal. In addition, the bottom dries much less hard at a depth than the top layer or the soil in a pot.
In a period of drought, water is sometimes scarcer than normal. Watering too much and at the wrong times of the day can therefore unnecessarily lead to wasted water. With these tips you keep that waste to a minimum and you ensure that the plants continue to grow well.
Plants in the ground:
Plants and trees in the ground only need extra water during prolonged drought in spring and summer. In Denmark they only need water in the summertimes, because the spring is still cold in the Nordic countries. Flowers or fried flowers are called in Danish, friske blomster or fødselsdags blomster. Normally, there is sufficient precipitation in Belgium and the Netherlands spread over the year to provide the plants with enough water. But we also occasionally see that it stays dry for a long time. During those periods, plants can have a hard time. This is especially true for plants that have just been planted or have not been in the ground for a year. Plants that have been growing in place for a longer period of time have a larger set of roots and are therefore less likely to suffer from drought.
When should I water plants in the open ground?
The best method of determining when to water is to keep an eye on the weather. In addition, the plants usually show when they are suffering from the drought; they leave the leaves hanging or part of the leaf starts to turn yellow/brown. Sometimes plants even drop part of their leaves. In that case, the plant has already been too dry once. To stay alive, the plant then sheds its leaves. Don’t panic, the plant usually sprouts again.
Plants in the garden are best given plenty of water during the morning or evening hours. This gives the plant the least chance of leaf burn. The droplets that remain on the leaves or flowers of plants can act as lenses and lead to sunburn in bright sunlight. The evaporation of water in the morning and evening is also much lower. So the soil and the plants have more time to absorb the water before it has evaporated.
How do I water plants and trees in the open ground?
Watering can be done by hand, but it is easier especially with larger surfaces with a sprinkler, spray or drip system. It is always better to water heavily once or twice a week during drought than a little every night. So leave the sprinkler on for an hour. Spraying is not necessary in changeable weather.
Three rules of thumb when watering plants in the open ground:
- If a plant has few or no leaves, watering is less necessary.
- Always water in the morning or evening to prevent leaf burn from the sun and to give the soil and plants time to absorb the water.
- Better to give plenty of water once or twice a week. By reducing the frequency you prevent the plants from staying wet for a long time. A humid environment can promote the formation of fungal infections.