House Plants

Worst Time To Water Plants ( And The Best )

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I think when it comes to taking care of the plants, watering the plants is very crucial. If you choose the wrong time to water the plants, it could even kill them. But can you water the plant anytime you want? Previously, I thought I could water the plant whenever I wanted. But as it turns out, you should not. So when is the worst time to water plants?

The obvious answer for the worst time to water the plants is midday and evening. As you might expect, the temperature would be at its highest at noon. During this time, the water evaporation would take place at a rapid rate, and the roots would not be able to soak up as much water as they wanted. On the other hand, if you happen to water them during the evening, it will make their foliage wet and make them susceptible to pathogens and other diseases.

So, in this article, I have elaborated on some of the useful tips that you could use when watering these plants. The reasons behind avoiding these watering times, etc. So, let’s take a look!

Worst Time To Water Plants

What is the worst time to water plants?

The middle of the day would be the worst time to water the plants. The temperature during midday would be extremely intense, and it would be the worst time to water the plants. It would make it difficult for the roots to absorb water because the plants would have to absorb escaping water. In other words, moisture would tend to evaporate instead of wetting the ground.

When it comes to watering in the evening, some people might think that it is okay to water them during the evening hours. However, if we consider this in general, it is not okay to water these plants using the overhead watering pattern during the evening hours. If you happen to water the plants in the evening, it will result in wet splotches on the leaves. It would eventually make the plants vulnerable to pathogen attacks.

That being said, you could water plants safely by using a soaker hose, drip irrigation method, watering wand, or a can with a long spout during the night. That way, you could avoid splashing water on the leaves. If you happen to splash water on the leaves, chances are that it will make you go through unnecessary issues.

When it comes to watering plants at night, I suggest avoiding doing so when it is too cold. If you happen to water them, it would enhance the humidity around the plants, which would eventually result in mold. This is something that you need to prevent from happening. To summarize, the worst times to water the plants are midday, later in the evening, and at night.

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The Best Times to Water Plants

The best time to water the plants is undoubtedly early morning. That is before the sun rises. Early morning is the best time to fulfill various purposes. So when you water these plants in the morning, it would allow the plants to have adequate water and store some for the rest of the day. When you do these things, chances are that you may spot them starting to wilt during the super-peak hours of the day. So, if you notice this among your plants, don’t be alarmed; it’s just how they’ve evolved to conserve water.  

Watering the plants in the morning hours would be the ideal thing to do, as it would nourish the plants. Besides, it would refresh the plants and make them more ready to conduct photosynthesis. Furthermore, many people tend to water plants in the late morning as well. By that time, the plants may still have some shade, which is crucial for their survival. Further, the weather would also not be too warm, and due to that, it is fine to proceed with watering plants at that time. 

Apart from the morning hours, you could consider watering the plants during the late afternoon too. During the late afternoon, the weather would not be too hot. However, I suggest you use equipment such as a soaker hose when watering the plants in the late afternoon. It is advisable to use these as there will not be adequate sun heat to dry off the moisture on the leaves before nighttime comes.

Therefore, you will have to apply water only at the soil level. That way, the plant’s roots can absorb much more effectively. Further, it would be a fine idea to water the plants in the late evening if you had particularly forgotten to do so during the early morning hours. If the weather is particularly hot, you could water the plants twice a day. It would help the plants survive in those adverse conditions. However, make sure that you don’t overwater the plants, as that would be disastrous for them.

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Worst Time To Water Plants

Watering Tips for Plants 

It is worthwhile to go through the following steps when watering the plants properly.

First and foremost, check the soil status before you proceed with watering the plants. To do that, you could try doing the knuckle test. I would say a knuckle test is the best thing you could do to check whether the plants are overwatered or underwatered. If you keep doing this, you’ll be able to estimate the plant’s water consumption.

Secondly, you can check the soil and see whether it has become too compact. You could expect the potting medium to become compact after a few years. Once you keep using compact soil, you can see how the water moves out of the soil faster without remaining there longer. Consequently, the plant’s roots will not have sufficient time to absorb water. If your plant’s soil seems to be compact, I suggest you repot them. When repotting, make sure that you use a fresh, quality potting mix as well.

Thirdly, always water the plants at the soil level. Ensure that you stick to this guideline, irrespective of whether you are watering ground plants or potted plants. Once you stick to this tip, it will allow you to apply water only to the plant’s roots and not to the leaves. As described above, if you drop water on the leaves, it would make the plants more susceptible to pathogen attacks.

Fourthly, you could use drip irrigation with a timer to water the plants. It is a simple way of watering the plants, and it would allow you to water the plants on a schedule. This method would be handy for a forgetful gardener. Finally, plants can be watered infrequently. However, when watering, make sure to water thoroughly. Having said that, you cannot follow this guideline if you have seedlings or leafy greens. 

Lastly, you should discard any excess water you find on the potted plants. Once you watered the potted plants, the excess water would drain. However, if you still witness any excess water even after you let it drain, ensure that you drain it. Unless it causes root rot. If you are a gardener, you might know how dangerous root rot can be. So, make sure that you discard any excess water remaining on the potted plants.

Can you water plants during the nighttime?

You can water the plants during the night, especially if you were out the whole day without watering them. If you find out they are wet, it would be best to apply some water to these plants. Before watering, you need to always ensure that the soil is dry. You think the soil is cool. It is not essential to apply water to them. So, remember that the best time to water the plants is in the early morning.

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Can you water your garden in the middle of the day?

If you are someone who lives in a hot climate, you could consider spraying the crops with some water, as it would help to remove the heat in the field. If you mist your crops with water during the midday hours, you will have a good harvest. That said, there are some concerns over watering the plants during the noon hour. However, if you don’t water them even during the middle of the day, chances are that they may die from the extreme heat.

Worst Time To Water Plants

Worst time to water the plants Winter

Never, ever water in the late evening during the winter. The middle of the day would be the most appropriate time to water the plants. Watering the plants during the winter is also crucial to ensuring healthy growth in the plants. Once you water the plants during the day during the winter, they will have more time to absorb water. Don’t water them in the late evening, as if you happen to do so, the plants will not have enough time to absorb water. Furthermore, they are likely to freeze in the late evening.

Best time to water potted plants

You can water potted plants in the morning or afternoon. When you water potted plants in the morning, it will give them more time to absorb water.

Final Thoughts

So, now you must know the best time to water and the worst time to water plants when taking care of your beloved plants. Once you become aware of these facts, it will help the plants grow healthily and vigorously. So, to sum up, early morning hours are the best time to water them, and try to refrain from watering the plants during midday and at night, which would be bad for your health. 

Credit to : Gardening In Canada

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I'm Dr. Chamika and I'm a Researcher in Water quality, Aquatic organisms, and Environmental chemistry. Our highly qualified team is trying to educate you in various aspects of the day to day life in many ways. Their mission is to help others to enjoy their life to the fullest.