Watering Equipment

Water is a gardenerís best friend.

How do plan on watering your garden.  The first thing you need to do is select the right watering equipment.  Here's several ways to accomplish the watering, each using a different combination of watering equipment:


Metal watering can1.  Most everyone is familiar with the good ole watering can.  You've probably seen a picture of one in a magazine or seen someone using one.  They are very convenient and low maintenance items.  They have a long spout with a nozzle head on the end that will give you a gentle stream of water for your delicate plants.  The wider the head on the end of the spout and the more holes it has, the finer will be the streams of water from the can.  Some cans have a removable head so you can also get a steady, solid stream of water.

For outdoors work, you'll want a large capacity can so you don't have to make so many trips to fill it up.  But remember, water is very heavy and it doesn't take much to make a can so heavy that it's a real pain to carry around.  Think about how heavy a one gallon can of paint is.  Of course, the nice thing about a watering can is that you don't have to drag around a watering hose.

 

Indoor watering can2.  For indoor watering there are smaller watering cans available that are usually made of plastic instead of metal.  Also instead of a head on the end of a spout, they just have a smaller spout that will give you better control.  You want a narrow stream of water for inside watering because you need to be very precise with the placement of the water.  You don't want to water your carpet as well as your plants.

 

Watering Wand3.  To avoid having to make continual trips to fill up a watering can, a great alternative is to use the good ole garden hose with a watering wand. Watering wands give you a beautiful shower of water and because of their length, you can reach plants in the back rows.

You'll want to get one that has a handle that's 2 to 3 feet long, which will give you a nice reach.  You attach the wand to your garden hose with a screw on coupling.  Another good thing to have is a shut-off valve on the wand.  If it doesn't come with one, then you should buy one separately.  You don't want to run back and forth to the water faucet every time you need to turn your wand off or on. 

Head for watering wandBe sure the wand has a large head, at least 2" in diameter with a lot of small holes, the more, the better.  The more holes in the head, and the smaller the holes, the finer will be the streams of water coming out of the head. 

A good watering wand will give you a lot of water, but in a gentle shower that treats your flowers with care.

 

Watering nozzleSimple watering nozzle4.  Finally, your third watering option is to use a watering nozzle on the end of your garden hose.  The nozzle will allow you to adjust the water from a single small diameter stream to a wide gentle spray pattern.  The nice thing about a watering nozzle is that you have a large range of adjustments in a single, simple to use head

The negative thing about a watering nozzle is that it will cut down considerably on the amount of water coming through the hose and out of the end of the nozzle.  A good watering wand will give you much more volume.  More volume allows you to get your watering job done more quickly.

A WORD OF CAUTION:

Don't use a garden hose to water flowers and small plants unless you have something on the end to slow down and disperse the stream of water. Otherwise, the water stream is strong enough that it can  tear up your flowers and can even wash away your mulch and make holes in your soil.  A garden hose by itself can be used to water trees and large bushes without any problems.


Which ever kind of watering equipment you decide to use, just remember that new plants and newly transplanted plants need more water than ones that are established and are a couple of years old.  Water new plants and transplants every day for about 3 or 4 days, then every other day for two weeks.  After that, you can water them when you water your other plants, but keep an eye on them and if they look a little wilted, then give them a little extra.

For transplants, cut back the size of the shrub or flower after you transplant it to about half its original size, that will give the root system time to get established before it has to support a larger plant.

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