Best Time to Water Your Garden

Best Time to Water Your Garden

When it comes to watering your garden the right time is largely a judgement call.  Watering will depend on the type of plant you’re trying to grow, the soil you’re growing it in, the time of year and how warm and dry the climate is.  That makes it sound more complicated than it really needs to be, the best time to water your garden is actually pretty easy to figure out, you just have to check the soil.

If you’re watering your flowers and they are in a pot you can simply lift the pot to check the soil.  You get to know how heavy the pot is supposed to be, wetter soil is heavier.  If the pot is too light, then it is time to water until the soil is thoroughly moistened and you have water coming out of the bottom.  Lift the pot at this point so you get a feel for the weight.

If you just dump water into the pot it will run past the roots and out of the bottom leaving your plant still needing water.  Water slower it is far more effective, you want the roots to be able to reach the water.  This is true for house plants, seedlings or your tomato plants.

Testing how heavy that you pots are isn’t going to work in your garden you’re going to have to try something else.  There are soil moisture sensors available that can tell you if you need to water your plants.  You can also push your shovel into the soil near your plant and feel the moisture.  You should feel moisture up to a depth of 12 inches, if you can’t it is time to water.

The Best Way to Water Your Garden

  • It’s all about the roots: It’s the plant’s roots that need the water the most, spraying water on flowers and leaves is largely a waste of time.  Not only that, it can encourage pests and diseases.
  • Water when you need to: You don’t need to water your plants in the rain.  Keep an eye on the weather and when there is plenty of rain cut back on the amount you water, you may not even need to water at all.
  • Pay attention to the type of plant: Grass and lawns need less water than shrubs or trees.  Grass only needs moist soil to a depth of 5 inches whereas trees and shrubs need moisture to a depth of a foot.
  • The early bird catches the worm: Water in the early mornings before it gets far too hot and if you get water on the leaves you have time for them to dry out.
  • Mulch is your friend: Mulch can help the water stay in the soil where it needs to be rather than just running off.

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Small Vegetable Garden Ideas

Small Vegetable Garden Ideas

Many people believe that if you want to grow your own vegetables you are going to need huge plots of land.  That simply isn’t true, you can easily grow a few veggies in a small space, you don’t need to become a farmer.  A small space vegetable needs many of the same things as a larger garden, you still need sun, soil, water and nutrients.  You can just scale it down a bit to accommodate your space here are some small vegetable garden ideas to get you started.

Water & Soil

Smaller gardens means that you will need less water overall but each individual plant is still going to need adequate amounts of water.  Don’t rely solely on rain to ensure that your garden gets enough water and you made need to water or put in some type of irrigation system.  You also need to be careful not to overwater your garden.

The soil that you use is probably the most important component, you need rich organic soil to make sure that you have great vegetables.  You probably don’t realize it but the richer your soil the better your vegetables are going to taste.  You can mix your soil ahead of time.  You need to be careful within a small space that you don’t overcrowd your vegetables, try planting seed that have been labelled dwarf, baby, patio or tiny.  They are ideal for small gardens but it doesn’t mean your going to get small vegetables.

Succession Planting

This is a great idea for those with limited space to plant.  What you do is reseed the vegetables that grow quickly and harvest them every few weeks for the growing season.  This doesn’t work for every type of vegetables but you can easily do it with, lettuce, zucchini and some types of beans.  There are vegetables like peppers, tomatoes and beans that can yield a continuous harvest if you look after them properly.  This is great when you have a small space not only can you get fresh vegetables, you can have them all season long.

There are other things you can do as well when you only have a small space to work with.  There is companion planting, where you plant a couple of different species together that can work together.  This also works well to keep pests out of your garden, for example you can plant cucumbers with carrots and tomatoes.  Here is a resource for companion planting and how to make it work for you.

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