Tips from Olle Garden Bed: 10 Watering Mistakes That Hurt Plants and H – Ollegardens website

Tips from Olle Garden Bed: 10 Watering Mistakes That Hurt Plants and How to Use Water More Wisely

Water is one of the most important factors - not only in your garden, but also on the planet. Life as we know it is impossible without this important factor. Unfortunately, too many of us, especially in developed countries, take this for granted. The following content also has some reference value for raised garden beds.

When you're used to putting water on the faucet, you don't always take the time to think about where it comes from or how you use it. Even if you do consider water, you may not always make the right decisions when it comes to gardens.

To explore how to use water wisely in your garden, let's look at some common watering mistakes.

By identifying errors, we can find ways to do better and manage our gardens in a more sustainable way.

raised garden bed

Therefore, there are ten watering mistakes that should be avoided without delay:

  1. Do not collect rainwater to irrigate plants

First of all, if you have a grain production garden and do not collect rainwater, you will make a big mistake.

I always suggest that gardeners should make sure they have the basics before planting the first seed.

When I say basics, I mean the core requirements that will ensure the garden's short-term and long-term viability. This includes:

Rainwater collection system (collecting rainwater from roofs and other man-made structures) and any other water management functions.

Composting system (recycling organic materials and returning nutrients to the garden system).

Good layout design and planting plan (allowing year-round organic planting, companion planting, rotation, etc.) The layout design should be customized for specific sites. The planting plan should include a wide range of right plants for the right locations. These should be selected to promote biodiversity, help pest control and provide yield.

Only when we have the basic knowledge of water and soil. Gardeners should start implementing their plans and planting their own food.

Of course, not everyone does things in this order. Even if you have put the cart before the horse, it does not mean that it is too late to implement these core requirements.

How to collect rainwater

Collecting rainwater from your roof is easier than you think.

Most families already have some form of drainage. If your home doesn't have a gutter to collect water from the roof, going to a hardware store and some simple DIY skills are needed to add some water.

Where drains are in place, rainwater is usually directed underground, where it meets the waterways system. Sometimes, it may simply spill to the ground near your home, and then flow into the rainwater channel.

Guiding water so that you can use it in your garden can be achieved in many ways. It is the simplest and simplest choice to place rainwater diverters and buckets or rainwater tanks near downpipes.

But you can also channel rain in different ways. As this article progresses, we will discuss some different methods that can store, guide, and use rainwater to meet the watering needs of the garden.

Why use rainwater for irrigation?

Getting rain off your property immediately is one of the biggest mistakes you can make. Fresh water is precious. We should all try our best to keep it.

Water will not only come in handy - especially in areas where there is less rainfall at some times of the year. Collecting and managing rainwater on your property can also help prevent problems with your property.

For example, taking measures to keep rainwater around can:

Prevent potential flooding or waterlogging problems "downhill" from your location.

Prevent pollutants in storm runoff from entering local streams and waterways and into the sea.

In addition, there are advantages to using rainwater instead of treated water supplies. Treated tap water usually contains chlorine, which can damage your plants. It may also contain a series of other pollutants that will accumulate in the soil over time.

Rainwater is not clean (how much pollution it contains depends largely on where you live). But generally speaking, rain is better for your crops and soil than the main power supply.

raised garden bed

  1. Use tap water when there is rain

You will be surprised that I often see people watering with hoses connected to the main pipe, even if they have a rainwater collection system and have rainwater available.

For example, taking measures to keep rainwater around can:

Prevent potential flooding or waterlogging problems "downhill" from your location.

Prevent pollutants in storm runoff from entering local streams and waterways and into the sea.

In addition, there are advantages to using rainwater instead of treated water supplies. Treated tap water usually contains chlorine, which can damage your plants. It may also contain a series of other pollutants that will accumulate in the soil over time.

Rainwater is not clean (how much pollution it contains depends largely on where you live). But generally speaking, rain is better for your crops and soil than the main power supply.

  1. Use tap water when there is rain

You will be surprised that I often see people watering with hoses connected to the main pipe, even if they have a rainwater collection system and have rainwater available.

  1. When there are other better options, water through a watering can or hose

You may want to know how to provide water for your plants without using a watering can or hose. But in fact, you can consider a range of solutions.

Watering with a watering can is usually very time-consuming. If you can't guide the water very effectively, you may waste some water.

Watering with hoses may be easier, but more wasteful. Water with hoses (or overhead sprinklers) is much more than what is actually needed.

Instead, consider installing drip irrigation.

This involves the use of leaky pipes to slowly transport water to the soil around the plants. It can be installed on the soil surface, but if it is buried underground, it may be more effective to bring water to the place where it is really needed.

Another option is to guide the rainwater you collect to the specially prepared planting area, which is called the core suction bed.

The sweat absorption bed is an elevated bed with a reservoir built in the base. Water is drawn from the bottom by capillary action and can be used for plants placed on the top.

If we are talking about ensuring that the annual fruits and vegetables get the water they need, then this is an interesting choice to consider.

  1. Missing the potential of water-based planting

The sweat absorption bed is just an example of a planting area, which provides an incredible water-saving solution for family planting.

It is a specific type of bed, usually integrated into hydroponics or fish vegetable symbiotic growth system.

The moisture absorption and perspiration bed usually uses the growth medium of soil type. But most hydroponics and fish vegetable symbiosis beds do not use any soil at all.

This seems counterintuitive. However, if you want to find a way to use less water in your garden, planting plants in water instead of soil may be an interesting solution. Water circulation in these systems. As a result, these systems use less water than traditional planting systems.

If you live in an area with relatively little rainfall and at least have not considered hydroponics or fish vegetable symbiosis, you may miss it. Any rainwater you collect can replenish such a system and then circulate through it. Therefore, you have an integrated setup that does not require any manual watering at all.

raised garden bed

  1. No measures are taken to store more water in plants and garden soil

In the organic garden, we should always think about how to cooperate with nature and natural systems.

One very important thing to consider is how we can store more water in the garden - not in tanks or other containers, but in the plants and soil itself.

Taking measures to improve the overall water storage capacity of our garden can greatly reduce the need for manual watering. If you don't spend any time thinking about it, you may be doing more than you need. Your garden may not be as elastic as it should be.

You can increase water storage capacity by ensuring that planting is relatively dense. And avoid leaving bare soil areas at any time and anywhere.

Over time, selecting and planting a large number of trees, shrubs and other perennial plants as well as annual crops can help improve the water storage potential of the garden.

It is also important to increase the water storage capacity of the soil by ensuring that large amounts of carbon organic matter are added. This may be in the form of compost or manure, as chopped and discarded plant material, or biochar.

  1. Other methods to reduce garden water consumption are not considered

Earthworks are another way to ensure that water stays in the garden and that it is directed where you want it.

Creating on contour depressions, basins, and berms helps keep water around and reduces the amount of manual watering required for certain parts of the garden.

You can also use terraces to slow the flow of water and maintain it on steep slopes. This will also help reduce the amount of water you have to do in the garden.

However, although such a plan is beneficial in many gardens, there is one thing that can almost universally help reduce water use - mulching.

If you do not use proper organic mulch around plants, it is likely that, especially in summer, you water more than you need. You may use more water than you actually need.

In addition to helping maintain soil water by reducing evaporation, it can also increase nutrients for plants and keep soil healthy.

Another almost universally applicable method of using water more wisely involves the selection of plants. Of course, some plants need more water than others. Therefore, in areas with low rainfall, it is important to choose drought tolerant plants with low water demand.

The choice of plants is also important in other ways. For example, by planting trees or other tall plants, you can create shadows, which will reduce the need for watering. You can also reduce watering requirements by using ground cover plants.

raised garden bed

  1. Excessive watering will damage plants and soil ecosystems

So far, we have studied some mistakes you may make in general gardening system and practice. However, no matter which watering system you choose to use in your garden, your own watering may leave some shortcomings.

You may be watering by hand. Or, you may have implemented the system to reduce the workload. However, a common mistake that can occur in either case is over watering.

It is common for new gardeners to overestimate the amount of water required for plants. Like "helicopter" parents, they tend to hover over the garden and intervene too frequently or too much.

When plants are over watered, they are more susceptible to pest and disease problems. Root rot and other fungal problems are more likely to occur when the soil or growth medium becomes moist and waterlogged.

Waterlogging can also cause soil compaction, and plant roots may not be able to obtain the required oxygen. If plants sit in standing water, they may rot around the crown or stem.

New gardeners often forget that different plants need different amounts of water. It is important to understand the water requirements of the plants you are planting.

It is also important to remember that watering needs can vary greatly depending on the climate and weather conditions in which you live. Keep in mind that plants usually need less water in winter in temperate climate gardens.

  1. Damage to plant and soil ecosystem due to too little watering

Of course, the reverse may also be a problem. Another common mistake is to water too little.

Watering is a delicate balancing act. You need to consider the plants you are planting, the climate and weather conditions, and your soil.

Even with relatively low water demand, drought tolerant plants also need some watering during the establishment process. In places with low rainfall, you need to ensure that you meet the water demand as a gardener. It is also important to remember that in hot weather, most plants require you to increase your watering level.

Plants that grow undercover may be particularly vulnerable. Therefore, if you grow indoors or in greenhouses or multiple tunnels, you absolutely need to pay attention to insufficient watering. Keep in mind that when rain does not reach the plants naturally, you will need to provide everything they need.

Another thing to remember is that if you plant plants in pots or containers, they will need more water. Too little watering is a common problem in container gardens.

If your soil is very light and drains freely, it is usually a common mistake to water too little. The more freely the soil drains, the more water plants need.

Plants that receive too little water usually experience greater stress, which again makes them more vulnerable to pests or diseases.

  1. Water is not delivered to the place where it is needed (by plant root)

The number of gardens watered from above and sprayed on the leaves of plants is amazing. This is another of the most common watering mistakes. Remember that most plants absorb water through the roots below the soil.

When we water from above, most of the water we use evaporates. Or, it will be lost before it actually gets where it needs to be.

It is very important to get water (no matter what system and method we use) to where it is actually needed. This may mean only careful hand watering around the base of the plant.

It may also involve finding ways to actually transport water below the surface of the soil - for example, through drip irrigation (as described above). This may also mean burying pottery pots or other containers in the soil close to the plants so that we can pour water into them, which can be slowly released into the soil.

raised garden bed

  1. Wet plant leaves and increase the risk of disease

Finally, watering from above is not just a waste of water. It can also wet the leaves of plants. For many plants, this increases the risk of disease.

For example, when leaves are kept moist, they are usually more prone to succumbing to fungal infections. In hot, sunny weather, the water in the leaves will also cause the leaves to burn.

Watering from below is an important strategy for disease management. Therefore, not taking measures to protect the leaves from water drops is another watering mistake that needs to be avoided.

By avoiding the above ten watering mistakes, you can create the right system and improve the watering method.

These are key considerations if you want to ensure the longevity of your plants and the long-term health of your garden.

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