Watering Wisely to Conserve Water, Time, and Energy

Whether you get the water for your garden from rain collection or from the tap, you are going to want to conserve this precious resource as much as possible.  You don’t want to run out, and you don’t want to add unnecessary cost to your garden.  You also don’t want to have to take the time and energy to water your garden inefficiently since you have enough to do already.  Here are a few tips on how to get the most of your water by watering wisely.


Check First

Check the soil to see if watering is necessary before you water.  Just because the soil on the surface looks dry doesn’t mean that your plants don’t have access to water underneath.  Poke your pointer finger into the soil, if you can’t feel moisture at this depth then it’s time to soak your soil.

Soak Don’t Spray

When you are watering your plants don’t spray them with a blast of water that could disturb soil, damage leaves, and even kill seedlings.  Soak the soil around the plants thoroughly with a gentle mist from a hose, or use a watering can that allows for a slow fine flow instead of a flood.

Add Organic Material

Organic material improves soil structure, aids in water retention, and adds food for beneficial organisms.  When your beds or rows are inactive, dig in material like horse manure.  This will feed worms and act like a sponge when watered.  You don’t want to add manure under the soil surface in an active bed.


Mulching will provide a layer of insulation against evaporation while also adding organic material to the soil surface that worms will feed on and then carry into the soil naturally.  A heavy layer of good mulch like straw or wood chips will greatly increase the amount of time between necessary watering.


Don’t water during the day, especially in the early afternoon.  Evaporation rates are highest during this time.  Watering in the early evening when the air has cooled and the sun is going down will allow the water the greatest amount of time to soak in.


I hope these tips help you save resources and time in your garden.


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