The summer is in full swing and that means long hot days with little rain in the forecast. This can be a crucial time to make sure your plants can do more than survive in this weather, but thrive.
1. Know What Conditions Your Plant Likes:
This falls under the “work smarter, not harder” category. Here we want to make sure we know what our plant likes to be happy. They could be really happy with being hot and dry, things like Sedum which would rather be ignored and left to soak in the sun than be watered frequently. Other plants may just like to be cool and only take in the some cooler, morning sun and therefore may not need to be heavily watered. Whenever you see a plant categorized as part sun, my assumption is always to give them the cooler morning sun and allow them shade in the high heat. Then there are plants that love the heat, but also love to have water available to them. Many tropicals and large fruiting veggies can fall under this category.
When you go about watering, take mental notes of where in the yard may get the all day sun, or where it is getting beaten more from the afternoon sun. The areas with the most sun is where you'll spend most of your time watering. When watering we want to try to avoid that heat as best as we can. That means try to water in the morning or evening. The reason for that is water will more likely get to your plants rather than evaporate in the summer heat.
3. Create a Schedule
Aren't we all just creatures of habit? When planning when to water, carve out a chunk of time in the day to do it. Whether it be moving the sprinkler with your morning coffee or winding down the day with a glass of wine in one hand and your water wand in the other. Also, don’t plan to try to water everyday, but rather try to water a few times a week with a focus on the plant getting a nice soaking. When we do this it allows the water to work deeper in the soil. This will force the roots to dig deeper for the water and thus allowing it to be less reliant on an everyday watering. Sometimes it helps to break the yard up into different days. Let’s say even days are the front yard and odd days are the back.
4. Soak It In!
When watering, try not to think of it as a chore. After all the hard work was in the planning and planting. Take in the progress your vegetables are making, or look for what has started to bloom. Although it is hot, I can assure you watering your beautiful planters is way more enjoyable than shoveling your car out of two feet of snow!
As the dog days of summer trudge on, let’s enjoy the garden time before we have to pull the fall sweaters back out. Whether we are about to harvest our tomatoes, or keeping the hummingbird’s favorite hibiscus watered, keeping these plants happy makes these summer days feel like summer!
Do you all have any watering tips? Also, what has been your favorite plant to watch grow this summer?