You may think that watering your garden seems like a no-brainer, right? You turn a nozzle and water comes out. Wrong! Keeping your flowers and plants properly watered actually takes a little insight if you want to make sure it’s done properly.

Veggies need water to grow and flowers need it to thrive. Overwatering, under-watering or even watering at the wrong time of day can put your precious plants at risk of things like rot, wilting and not growing at their full potential.

Poor Watering Habits

Poor watering can not only destroy your veggies and flowers, but it can also be detrimental in places where there is a drought or water limitations. Water is a highly precious resource and it’s important to be knowledgeable about watering your plants. With just a little knowledge, you can become a watering expert and make sure you have a landscape with stunning flower beds and ripe, thriving veggies and herbs.

Dos and Don’ts of Properly Watering Your Garden


  • Do water as early as possible in the morning when the ground is the coolest and the plants can best soak up the water.
  • Don’t water during the middle of the day when sunlight is beaming down. This is a recipe for your plants to wither up and die.
  • Don’t water late in the evening after the ground has been baking in the sun all day. Without the chance to dry, your plants will be prone to attracting bugs and rotting.
  • Don’t water for too long. You are most likely simply wasting water and it will be more likely for your veggies to have fungus and for your flower beds to become soggy.
  • Do water thoroughly enough for the water to soak into the roots. The roots are what really need nutrients.
  • Do give your lawn at least one inch of water during the driest, hottest months of the year. A great landscape will be the perfect complement to a lovely garden.
  • Do aim the water hose at the base of the plants. Your goal should be to thoroughly moisten the roots instead of soaking the flowers and veggies. Wet foliage can leave to fungus growing.
  • Don’t water haphazardly when you only have a few minutes. Your goal should be a thorough moistening. One of the worst things you can do is to give the plants a quick hose during your lunch break or after work.
  • Do give all newly planted flowers and veggies a thorough soaking immediately after planting them or their seeds.
  • Don’t use a hard-blasting hose setting or a hose that has a very wide spray. These will likely damage the plants and don’t always reach the roots.
  • Do invest in a gentle water wand. This is especially good for flower beds that love a gentle sprinkling rather than a hose blast.
  • Do utilize mulch and compost when possible or work with a professional landscaper. This helps the soil to rain the moisture.
  • Don’t overwater during the dry months. This can cause the vegetables and fruit to rapidly inflate and the skin will end up splitting open and attracting bugs.
  • Do avoid getting the leaves too wet if you can, especially if they are in direct sunlight. This literally causes the leaves to bake in the sun.
  • Don’t rely solely on a sprinkler to get the job done. Sprinklers are for lawns. A great garden needs a loving gardener to take the time to water it properly.

    Watering Frequency

    Some of the most common questions are regarding the frequency of watering. You should typically be watering two to three times each week unless you live in a place with excess rain. This is the proper watering volume for the warmer spring and summer months. Fall months will likely need less water. When you water, make sure the water has the chance to really soak into the soil. You want to make sure it reaches the roots that need water as a nutrient.

    Watering Container Gardens

    If you have flowers or veggies planted in containers, you will typically want to water them every day during the warmest months. Container gardens tend to hold moisture more than general gardens do. You will want to push back the soil to make sure there aren’t soggy puddles that will lead your container gardens to become overwatered. Again, you want to give them about an inch of water.

    Watering Tools

    This is when a watering wand comes in exceptionally handy. A watering wand is a very gentle spray. It is almost close to mist. This allows you to put a shallow cup or small bowl in the garden so you can measure to make sure it is receiving about one inch of water each time you spray. If you don’t want a watering wand, make sure that you always set your hose on the “shower” setting. One of the biggest mistakes people make is blasting their veggies and flowers with water. This is basically a shock to the plants and it often doesn’t allow the water to sink all the way down to the roots where it is most needed.