There are some things in the garden that should never be “fooled around” with. Since we are entering April, the month of showers, it is the perfect time to think about the watering situation in our gardens. When was the last time you checked your hoses for leaks or replaced the washers in the nozzles or sprinklers? Before summer heat and drought sets in, maybe this should be a “splash” on your to-do list!
The first thing you should do is assess the parts of your garden or lawn that need the most watering. If you were lucky or smart enough to install an irrigation system—kudos! But you probably still need to check all the sprinkler heads and the timing device to make sure all is well. Also, remember the best time to water is early in the morning so lawns dry out. The soil should not be soaked to the point water is standing. A thorough soak two to three times a week should take care of most garden needs. Container plants should be grouped in shadier areas—under trees or under patio covers, if possible. Make sure to mulch all flower beds so water will stay absorbed longer.
Make sure that you have a hose of ample length to reach all the spots in your garden. You may need a splitter with two heads to attach to the spigot. Now you can hit two garden areas at one time! Vegetable gardeners might consider a soaker hose or drip hose to keep water around the bottom of the plants. You can leave these in place all season.
There is such a great variety of new hose materials. Take a trip to the local hardware store and check them out. Try to find one that will not tangle or crimp. Also remember to look for the right length hose. A hose reel or hose hanger makes watering easier and tidier.
While at the store, check out the many choices for nozzles and sprinklers. Read what they do and find the one that fits your situation best. If you love your old ones, simply get a pack of washers to prevent connection drips. Having a wet arm when spraying plants is not ideal, neither is a puddle around your lawn sprinkler.
Water at least an hour on these days and optimally, hope Mother Nature does most of the work for you! If possible, turn off your irrigation system when Mother is doing the job herself! Water control is one of the most foolproof ways to have more success in your garden. Happy gardening!