Just Add Water!
Sometimes we need to help Mother Nature provide water to our gardens. Brent Crain, Consumer Horticulture Educator for Michigan State University Extension, offers practical tips on how to water properly and effectively.
Brent explains that most plants require the equivalent of about one inch of water per week. However, the amount may vary dep He suggests using a tuna can—which is about an inch deep---to measure the effectiveness of our watering. Bury the can into the soil, then water as usual. If you do not fill the can, you need additional water. He also suggests using the “finger test” by inserting a finger into the soil to the second knuckle. It is OK if the top inch or so of soil is dry, but should be moist below; if not—it is time to water.
Brent also says that it is essential to water plants at the soil level, with a goal of getting water deep (about six to eight inches) into the roots of the plant. Also, it is best to water early in the day. It is important that the foliage is dry before the sun sets, as wet foliage promotes fungal disease.
Remember that plants—like people—need a steady supply of water to survive and thrive!