Saturday, July 27, 2013

5 Summer Watering Tips

For the Bees, please!
You can get a flower, but if it doesnt have enough water, there won't be enough nectar (the bee's food).  
We owe 1 in 3 bites of food to a pollinator.  So water your plants and feed the bees at the same time!

1.  Water timing - in the early morning or the late evening - water will evaporate quicker in the daytime

2.  Water thoroughly for a long time every few days - if you only do a light watering, it won't penetrate the soil.  Roots will move to where the water is and you want deep root growth so the plant can survive drought conditions.  Not sure?  stick your finger in or dig down 4 inches to see if anything has gotten wet.

3.  Good Soil Soil - Keep your soil full of organic matter that helps absorb and slow release moisture.  Sandy soil drains quicker and won't retain water so more frequent watering would be needed.  Adding compost annually helps.

4.  Mulch - if you can't get to every area - use bark mulch, wood chips, even cardboard to help keep moisture in.  Bonus:  less weeding.

5.  Build irrigation dams.  If soil is super dry, water will just run off or away from your plant.  Build little moats to keep the water in a specific area, even around one plant.  Be patient as your water ssslowly finds a way to get absorbed by those ultra dry particles!

Household tip:  Containers and raised beds dry out quicker than in-ground plants.  Move containers if you are going away to shady spots that are less stressful.  We are near setting a record for longest days of sunlight and the least amount of rain.  It's a good thing we have those West Coast mountains and reservoirs full of H20 (as opposed to a desert ecosystem where the water is way way way underground!)

Thanks to the Wolfe Watering crew - keeping our gardens alive in the heat!