Often times, part of maintaining a beautiful landscape is taking care of the plantings in your flower beds and other areas. This can mean taking care of a whole host of different plant life including annuals, perennials, shrubs, and trees. And while there are many things you can do to take care of your plants, the most important things you can do is properly water them! So we’ve collected our watering knowledge here so you keep your plants looking healthy and sprite!
When to water: check the top 1″ of soil around the base of the plant. If the soil feels wet, then there is no need to water. If it feels dry, then it’s time to water!
How to water: Trees require different watering than shrubs which require different watering than perennials. Here are different methods suited for different plants.
Trees – Leave a hose at the base of the tree and let water flow out in a stream about the width of a pencil. Let water flow for 20-30 minutes and repeat every 7-10 days during the summer. You might need to water more often if it is hot and dry, just check the soil like mentioned above for when to water.
Shrubs – Using a watering wand (an attachment to your hose that creates a lighter, showering stream of water) water each plant for about 20-30 seconds. Check on shrubs every 4-5 days during the summer, or more regularly if its particularly hot and dry.
Perennials (plant that lives more than two years)- depending on pot size or where they’re planted, these plants may need water more or less often. For perennials planted in ground, follow the same directions as shrubs checking every 2-3 days. For perennials in 1 gallon, or 6″ and quart pots , check and water every other day and everyday if it’s dry and hot out. For small pots (3-4″) check every day, especially during hot and dry periods of the summer, and water for approximately 10 seconds.
Into the future: after a plants first season and its established in the ground it won’t need additional watering except a good deep soaking after stretches of dry weather. In the fall its good to give trees and shrubs a deep soak in mid-late November before winter to help them over the winter season. It’s also helpful to treat your evergreens, rhodies, and boxwoods with an antitranspirant for plants to help them keep from drying out over the winter.
Monitoring Irrigation systems: monitor your plants and soil closely if using an irrigation system. Run the system minimally to make sure your plants aren’t over-watered. Use the same method of checking the base to make sure it’s wet and set your irrigation to maintain that accordingly, taking into account rainfalls and dry spells. Typically your irrigation should run once a week, depending on the rain fall and temperature of the season.
Special Plants/Instructions: certain plants needs to be watered more/less frequently. Plants to water more frequently: Summersweet, Itea, and endless summer hydrangea. Plants that need to dry between waters: Rhododendrons, Russian cypress, junipers, evergreens, sedum. Don’t water these if the soil is moist at all.