The only reason my first attempt at growing a vegetable garden survived is because my husband and I worked on the project together.
Basically, I forget that plants need water to grow.
Gardening experts say vegetable gardens should be watered 2 to 3 times a week to promote healthy growth and nice deep roots. I start out doing that after I plant my garden but once you throw rain into the mix, I either accidentally over water or under water depending upon if I wait for a rainstorm.
Either it doesn’t rain enough to water the plants enough or I don’t want to take a chance on the weather forecast for rain failing me again and water the garden only to be followed by a heavy thunderstorm.
So yeah, up until now my garden fails are a result of watering too much or not enough.
Switching to self watering planters like this one for my patio container garden helps but even they need to be watered or the plants will die.
Fortunately, I found the best way to tell if your vegetable garden needs water before the plants wilt – use a rain gauge like this one! (Disclosure: I am including affiliate links in this post for your convenience.)
According to the garden gurus, your lawn and garden only needs one inch of water each time you water it in order to grow those nice deep roots and prevent root rot. I don’t always get that information from my local news forecast online and even so they measure rainfall and temperatures for the entire viewing area. Meaning their results can vary depending upon where you live and where their equipment is located. And that’s one of the reasons why my garden dies.
I found is much easier tell if I need to water my garden after it rains or not by putting a simple rain gauge in my own yard. I stuck a rain gauge in the ground near your garden and check it after every time it rains. If I get an inch or more of rain during a storm, I’m good. I don’t need to water the lawn and garden.
If I get less than one inch of water during a rainstorm, I break out the hose and water your plants. No rain in the gauge after two or three days? Time to bust out the sprinkler or soaker hose and water the garden until the rain gauge hits the one inch mark for happy and healthy plants!
We grew our best and most plentiful crop of vegetables the first year we used a rain gauge to water our garden. It is now an essential gardening tool that is right up there with tomatoes cages and our rain barrel.
If you'd rather buy than DIY a rain gauge, check out the following options - and more! - below!
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