Let's Talk About Water

Let's Talk About Water

Happy roots, happy life! 

We firmly believe that all plants have their own personalities and that no two plants regardless of species are the same. Identifying your plants watering needs can be tricky and overwhelming but we're here to break it down for you and offer you some techniques in order to relieve some of that stress. 

Now for starters, it's important to reprogram our view on watering. Watering is not a chore. It's meant to be a positive experience and it's a great opportunity to check in with your plants AND yourself. This isn't to say that you're not allowed to feel some plant burn out. We've been there before, believe me! And we've also neglected our plants when depression has struck us hard. So by no means, have we had a perfect track record but below are some of the techniques that have helped us get back into the groove of things and start again. Btw, it's never too late to start over! 

Here are some of our favorite watering techniques:

1.Top Watering is probably the most common form of watering plants. This includes pouring water over the soil and allowing it to run down the soil and out the drainage holes. When top watering it's important that you are watering the soil as evenly as possible. Try circular motions and make sure the water runs out the drainage holes. When we provide too little water we can inadvertently create dry pockets of soil and that's not good for our plants. 

2. Bottom Watering is one of our favorite ways to water our plants. We love this watering technique because it allows us to multitask and move through our day! We'll sit our plants in a container of water (usually an old storage bin or Tupperware) and run out to walk our dog or buy groceries and by the time we get back home our plants are hydrated and happy and we can place them back in their cachepots (decorative pots). Bottom watering is also great for plants that can't get their leaves wet such as African Violets. If this is or becomes your primary way of watering your plants make sure to occasionally flush the plant for excess salts. Simply top water the plant and let the water run through the drainage holes. 

3. Immersion is a life saver. When we're coming out of a depressive episode our plants have gone through it as well. They're often dehydrated if not dead. What we'll do is grab an old but clean bucket and fill it with water. Then we'll "dunk" our plants inside allowing the water to fill the plant. When we're doing these immersions we're only wetting the soil not the actual foliage. We'll immerse the plant a couple of times until we can see that the soil is evenly moist. We check by gently lifting the plant out of its pot and inspecting the roots. 

4. Aeration is a newer technique we've been trying these days. This technique involves pocking holes in the soil and then top watering. You'll want to make sure the holes are approximately the same size and are evenly spaced. You can use your finger or any sticks (tooth picks, skewers) that you have laying around. This watering method allows the water to move down and through the soil in a more consistent matter. 


Generational Pro Tip From My Mom:

Invest in watering stakes! When I first moved out and into my own apartment my mother gifted me watering stakes for my plants. I was restarting my journey with plants after being unsuccessful at keeping my bamboo plant alive during my undergrad career. Ceramic watering stakes are the way to go in our opinion. Plus, there are tons of cute designs and it gives your plant a little friend. Think of them as a watering hack. The stakes will detect when the soil is dry and gradually release water into the plant. It's like it's doing the job for you *wink wink*. We still use them to this day especially for those thirstier plants that we struggle to keep moist. 

Our Pro Tip:

Moisture. Meter. 

I used to be really good about touching the soil to check for moisture and then I started depending on my sight to determine if plants needed water. Sometimes I could tell just by glancing at the leaves or the soil but there's been many times where the soil looks dark and wet and it's entirely dry. A moisture meter allows me to check in on the roots. It's got an easy to read meter that breaks down moisture into three parts (dry, moist, wet). They're easily available in hardware stores and online. 


Things to Remember:

Remember how we said not all plant are the same? We mean it! So this means that not all of your plants are going to get watered on the same day. Reframe your watering day into a watering check in. A lot of the times you'll be checking in on a plant to see if it needs watering, sometimes it will and sometimes it won't. 

Don't forget about the weather. Just like the weather affects us it also affects our plants. When there's extra sunshine and heat your plants might need a little more moisture than on colder days. Turning on the heater and air conditioner is also going to factor into how frequently you'll be watering so make sure to check in with your plants. 

And please don't freak out when you bring new plants home and they're not looking the way you expected. Put down your water container. Plants are living organisms and when they're inserted in a new environment they'll go through an adjustment period which might include some yellow leaves or dropped leaves. But more on that later! 

The plant parenthood life is a journey filled with ups and downs. Don't get discouraged. Google is your best friend and if you'd like our opinion feel free to contact us on instagram @lilithsgardenla for a quick plant consult. We're here for you and we beleaf in you. 

Back to blog