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How Do I Know If my Soil Needs Watering?

Good soil is essential for a good harvest. The soil must have all the nutrients necessary for the growth of the plants, and a structure that keeps them firm and straight. The soil structure must ensure sufficient air and water for the roots of the plant, but must avoid excess water through good drainage.

Most of the nutrients are recycled by the roots of the plant and return to the soil through the leaves that fall from it. Worms, insects, and small organisms like fungi also feed organic matter into the soil and change it to produce humus, which makes the bottom layer of the soil dark and well-structured. Humus is quickly lost if the soil is left exposed to the air for a long time without any cover. The subsoil is generally less fertile.

40 OUNCE SMALL GREEN PLASTIC WATERING CAN

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A commonly used method of determining when to water is to monitor the decrease in water in the soil. When a plant grows, it uses water from the soil around its root zone. As plants use water, soil moisture drops to a level where irrigation is required or the crop begins to become stressed from lack of water. If no water is applied, the plant will continue to make use of the little moisture that remains until it finally uses all the available water in the soil and dies of thirst.

Determining soil moisture by touch has been used for many years by researchers and farmers alike. By squeezing the soil between the thumb and index finger or squeezing the soil into the palm of the hand, a fairly rough estimate of the moisture in the soil can be obtained. It takes a little time and some experience to accomplish this, but it is a proven method. For example, if we look at the soil in our gardens we can see that the wilting point occurs when the sand contains one inch of water per foot of soil, this means that we can hold the soil with our hand and form a compact ball. As the soil dries, it becomes difficult to make a ball of dirt and soon the dirt crumbles between your fingers.

40 OUNCE SMALL GREEN PLASTIC WATERING CAN

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Weeds can deprive soil and desirable plants of the water and nutrients they need. Unfortunately, many weeds can thrive and flourish in dry, sandy soils. If your soil dries quickly, mulch can help retain soil moisture. Mulch helps prevent evaporation of water; use a thick layer of mulch 2-4 inches deep.

Although it is not advisable to accumulate thick mulch around the base of the plants, it is a good idea to pile the mulch in a donut shape a few inches from the crown of the plant or the base of the tree. This raised circle around the plants encourages the flow of water towards the roots of the plants.

The best method to retain moisture in the soil is to amend the top 15-30 cm of the soil. To do this, add or mix organic materials that have a high water-holding capacity. Sphagnum moss can hold up to 20 times its weight in water. Compost rich in humus also has high moisture retention, as does straw, shredded bark, mushroom compost, perlite, and so on. Many of these amendments have nutrients that your plants will benefit from.

 

40 OUNCE SMALL GREEN PLASTIC WATERING CAN

Sold out

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Good soil is essential for a good harvest. The soil must have all the nutrients necessary for the growth of the plants, and a structure that keeps them firm and straight. The soil structure must ensure sufficient air and water for the roots of the plant, but must avoid excess water through good drainage.

Most of the nutrients are recycled by the roots of the plant and return to the soil through the leaves that fall from it. Worms, insects, and small organisms like fungi also feed organic matter into the soil and change it to produce humus, which makes the bottom layer of the soil dark and well-structured. Humus is quickly lost if the soil is left exposed to the air for a long time without any cover. The subsoil is generally less fertile.

A commonly used method of determining when to water is to monitor the decrease in water in the soil. When a plant grows, it uses water from the soil around its root zone. As plants use water, soil moisture drops to a level where irrigation is required or the crop begins to become stressed from lack of water. If no water is applied, the plant will continue to make use of the little moisture that remains until it finally uses all the available water in the soil and dies of thirst.

40 OUNCE SMALL GREEN PLASTIC WATERING CAN

Sold out

Determining soil moisture by touch has been used for many years by researchers and farmers alike. By squeezing the soil between the thumb and index finger or squeezing the soil into the palm of the hand, a fairly rough estimate of the moisture in the soil can be obtained. It takes a little time and some experience to accomplish this, but it is a proven method. For example, if we look at the soil in our gardens we can see that the wilting point occurs when the sand contains one inch of water per foot of soil, this means that we can hold the soil with our hand and form a compact ball. As the soil dries, it becomes difficult to make a ball of dirt and soon the dirt crumbles between your fingers.

40 OUNCE SMALL GREEN PLASTIC WATERING CAN

Sold out

Weeds can deprive soil and desirable plants of the water and nutrients they need. Unfortunately, many weeds can thrive and flourish in dry, sandy soils. If your soil dries quickly, mulch can help retain soil moisture. Mulch helps prevent evaporation of water; use a thick layer of mulch 2-4 inches deep.

Although it is not advisable to accumulate thick mulch around the base of the plants, it is a good idea to pile the mulch in a donut shape a few inches from the crown of the plant or the base of the tree. This raised circle around the plants encourages the flow of water towards the roots of the plants.

The best method to retain moisture in the soil is to amend the top 15-30 cm of the soil. To do this, add or mix organic materials that have a high water-holding capacity. Sphagnum moss can hold up to 20 times its weight in water. Compost rich in humus also has high moisture retention, as does straw, shredded bark, mushroom compost, perlite, and so on. Many of these amendments have nutrients that your plants will benefit from.

40 OUNCE SMALL GREEN PLASTIC WATERING CAN

Sold out

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SIGNUP FOR DISCOUNTS & GIVEAWAYS

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