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How do I properly water my plants?

Watering your plants is one of the most important parts of taking care of your plants. Watering your plants is every important, because it can help your plants thrive, but if done incorrectly it could kill your plants. Luckily, you can do a few things to make sure you're watering your plants properly.

It starts with checking the soil before you water your plant. You can check if the soil is dry and if it's dry then you can water it. If your houseplant requires more moisture, then you can leave the soil slightly moist when watering for a next time. The easiest way to keep plants properly hydrated is to have drainage holes in the pot and using the correct soil mix for your plants.

In this post, we're going over different types of plants and how you can water them properly. This includes water-loving tropical plants, plants that like to dry out slightly, and cacti & succulents.

Watering tips for any plant

Before we get into specific types of plants, we should get some general watering advice out of the way. Watering is easiest when you have pots that have draining holes in them. If you don't have pots with drainage holes, you have to guess how much water you should give your plants. This is fine for experienced plant owners, but it's not good for beginners. The goal of having drainage holes is getting rid of excess water: water the soil can't soak up. If you have a pot without a drainage hole, any excess water will remain at the bottom of your pot. This could put the plant at risk of developing root rot.

When you have a pot with drainage holes, you can water your plant until the water starts to drip out of the drainage hole. When it does this, let it drip for 5-10 minutes. The soil will be drained of all excess water and your plant is well hydrated. You can apply this strategy to any type of plants described in this post.

When you're buying new plants, you should do some research on their watering needs, this way you're prepared to water them correctly. This research will also help you to figure out if something is wrong with your plant. For example: if you overwater a plant its leaves are wilting or turn brown. If you know the watering needs of your house plant, you can see if you've overwatered or under watered them. This way it's quite simple to adjust your care and give the plant what it needs.

Now let's get into some specific plant types.

Watering tropical plants

Most tropical plants prefer to have slightly moist soil because this is what they have in their natural habitats. When you have some of these house plants, you will need to use soil that can hold a lot of moisture, the moisture should not escape quickly. When you use soil that can retain a lot of water, you won't have to water your plant as often because it will be in perfect condition for much longer than if you were to use well-draining soil.

Tropical plants prefer moist soil, but not wet soil. Your soil still needs to be well-draining and your pot should have draining holes through which the excess water can escape. The soil should also allow oxygen to reach the roots of your plant. Since oxygen should still be able to reach your plant's roots, you should use soil that can handle being moist. If you were to use normal potting soil for this, it will compact and become too dense. This will stop the roots from being able to breathe the oxygen and they will suffocate.

Plants that like to dry out slightly

Unlike tropical plants, most houseplants don't like to sit in wet or moist soil for too long. If they're exposed to too much moisture for too long, they might suffer from root rot and this will kill the plant. For these plants, it's very important to have well-draining soil. Soil that doesn't retain water for too long. A few days is acceptable, but not more than that.

Before you water your plants you should make sure that the top 5 cm (2 inches) of soil is dry. You can do this by sticking your finger in the soil and feel the moisture. If you're not sure if it's dry or not, there is a simple rule of thumb: dry soil won't stick to your finger. So if it does, wait a few more days before watering that specific plant.

Watering cacti & succulents

Cacti and succulents are known for being very easy to take care of. One of the aspects that makes this easy, is the fact that you can forget about them and they'll survive. When it comes to watering these types of plants, you should keep it to a minimum. You should water them once every 2-3 weeks or when the plants start to show signs of being thirsty. If you water it more often, you might risk overwatering these plants and that will kill them in the long run.

When planting these plants in a pot, preferably with a draining hole, make sure to use a cactus soil mix. This mix is made to let water escape very quickly and also doesn't hold a lot of water. This is because cacti and succulents thrive when they're in a dry environment, like their natural habitat.

Thank you for reading this post! I hope it helps you to keep your plants healthy and beautiful! If you're looking for more guides on specific plants, you can always request a plant guide to get a guide for the plant you have trouble with.

Tags: water

Posted on: Jun 20, 2019 Last updated on: Sep 10, 2021

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Frequently asked questions

Can watering my plants too much harm them?
If you have plants that are very sensitive to too much water, watering them too much can kill your plants. Make sure to do some research about your plant's watering needs and you'll help it thrive.

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