Ok, so it’s meant to be summer but right now it’s cold and rainy as I write this which makes this week’s nugget of common sense for the garden seem a bit idealistic and unrealistic but, you know what, I’m an optimist and I firmly believe we’ll get some weather that we can call Summer… at some point.
Don’t waste your time or energy watering during the day.
And when that happens, you’ll be delighted that you already know about this small but significant aspect of watering your pots and plants that so many people are unaware of. To such an extent that these people are actually doing double the work to get the same result as you will once you’ve taken this gem of a technique of watering on board.
I’m sure you must be wondering what I’m on about because watering is quite straight forward – and it is. You either get the hosepipe or the watering can and you pour water onto the plants – but the trick I want to you to know about the impact that the time of day you do it can have on the result.
Quick test to check out what I mean for yourself…
If you water the plants on a warm and/or sunny and/or breezy day, you will lose quite a bit to evaporation or the wind blowing it elsewhere. To prove my point for yourself, try this test – on the next nice, dry day, thoroughly water a patch in your herbaceous border and when all the water has disappeared, take a trowel and investigate how far the water has soaked into the soil. You will be amazed at how little water penetration there has been. In addition, depending on the strength of the sun when you water, you also run the risk of causing scorch marks on the leaves which occurs when the water droplets on the leaves magnify the heat of the rays of the sun to such an extent that it burns the leaf. Similar unsightly damage can be done to flowers as well with magnolias and camellias being prime examples of this.
Solution is Simple – Water in the evening.
So in order to maximize the effort of watering, the cost of the water itself and remove the potential damage the water droplets on the leaves can do, water your plants in the evening, when it’s cooler. In this way, the water you apply will not be evaporate back into the atmosphere and you will be surprised how much more water gets to the plant you want it to.
Have a go this weekend.
If it’s not raining or has rained recently, have a go a doing the watering test. It’s not a particularly scientific means of testing where the water goes but it’s enought to demonstrate to you what I’ve talked about. If you’re really keen, you could do a comparison between watering during the day and in the evening. If you’re going to do this, make sure you do the tests in the same area of the border.
Let me know what happens if you do try the watering test?
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