How do you avoid under - and overwatering your plants?

Discussion in 'Sick Plants and Problems' started by Oye, Apr 3, 2016.

  1. Hey all

    Ive read about this method of watering your plants:

    You water until 10-20% of the water comes out the drainage holes in the bottom of the container.
    Ive managed to overwater a couple of plants, but if this method was used, I could avoid it completely.

    My big question is: Can you use this method on baby plants, seedlings? Is it better to water a bit frequently or a lot less frequently?

    Do you have any tips or know of other watering-methods?
  2. Great question especially with the baby plant qualifier

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  3. I don't have a ton of cannabis experience, but did work at a nursery when I was younger, it was a fairly busy one in Santa Monica.
    The owner had us packing the sides of the pot very tight and the middle (where roots would grow) was more loose.
    When we watered, it was just enough for some to spill out the bottom.
    We only water very dry pots.

    I'm using that method for all my plants, cannabis or not. And they seem healthy.
  4. I only water that much in late flower, seedlings I just keep moist or you'll over water and stunt them.
  5. With seedlings I use a spray bottle and keep it on mist making sure the topsoil is almost always damp. I let it dry out a tad about an inch down before I spray the surface again. I never let it get enough water to drain out of the bottom, spraying/misting works fine. Right now under LEDs I spray the topsoil once or twice a day if at all for my seedlings.

    Remember; roots grow when they're looking for water. If your soil is always wet all the day down, the roots theoretically won't grow as much because they don't have to go anywhere looking for moisture or nutrients, so it can be good to let it dry out for brief periods.

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  6. P.s. I use air pots so my soil dries out really fast, you probably would only need to mist every other day or so. Just gauge it depending on the circumstance.

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  7. The 10-20% over run method works well for bigger plants, just make sure the pots dry out in between waterings. For babies and seedlings, if the span between the leave is 1" apart, I water to wet the soil in a 2" circle with the seedling at the center, let dry and repeat until the plants are big enough to take full watering. I hope this helps!
  8. The easiest and most sure-fire method is by just lifting the container the plant is growing in....assuming it is a size than can be lifted easily. When the pot feels like it is dead dry...but your plant is not droopy from being too dry, then it's time to water. Another cheap and sure method is by buying a moisture probe. I think I gave $12.00 for mine and it measure the moisture down deep in the buckets. I bought it because I started flowering off in 5 gallon buckets and it's very hard to tell what the moisture level is down deep around the roots even by lifting the bucket. I've had them feel like they were dry and then check them with the probe and they would read "wet" around the roots. It's a big deal though. These plants do not like to have their roots sitting in moisture all the time. They need a very light and arid soil with excellent drainage to prevent this from happening. So if your soil isn't the right consistency, you need to amend it with perlite to a ratio of about 60/40 soil/perlite. It's not cruel to the plant to let it dry out like that either. They love it and it forces the roots to search out the entire container for water/food, grows a stronger plant with a better root ball. The roots are the key to the health of your plant. Though you don't see them, they are the "brain" of the whole operation. Keeping them happy will mean keeping the foliage happy...thus, better harvest and nicer buds. Good luck! TWW
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