Should you water tomato plant leaves? Or is this a bad idea?
If you are a first-timer dabbling on planting tomatoes, you may not know what to do exactly when it comes to watering your crops.
How do you know if you’re watering it more or less than you should?
And most importantly, are you supposed to keep the leaves dry?
These are just some of the many other questions we are answering in this post today. Let us investigate further on how to water tomato plants to achieve the best yield.
Watering Tomato Plants – How Much Is Too Much?
Tomatoes are healthy and tasty fruits.
They are also quite easy to grow even if you have a modest space in your yard. But the key to a successful crop is in watering it the right way.
Thus, let us discuss how often and how much watering is required for your tomatoes.
Generally, tomatoes need plenty of water. However, there are folks who assume that it is okay to keep their soil soaked, which may do more harm than good to your crops.
This is why when it comes to tomatoes, you only need to water them when needed.
The best way to determine if it needs some water is by checking the soil. You want to make sure the soil is still damp right around your plant.
There are times when watering once daily is required, especially if the weather is humid and hot. But if it rains more often and the temperature is cooler, then it should be fine to water it less.
The key here is that you can tell a lot by checking the soil. If it is still moist, then this should be good enough to promote root growth. In fact, it is easier to keep the soil damp than hydrating it as much as possible after being very dry.
How Much Water Is needed?
Science takes the center stage when determining the optimal amount of water for your tomatoes.
Ideally, your crops require one inch of water a week. This is if you want them to really thrive and have better yields. In this case, we are talking about an inch or more of water in the soil, which could mean using up half a gallon or a full gallon in a week.
But do keep in mind that you cannot simply water your crop so much in one day. If you do, it will result in a run-off, as well as standing water. This is also not good for your plants as it can cause molds and mildew to form.
Hence, we go back to the optimal way to determine the right amount of water, which is how damp or dry the ground is.
Experience can teach you so much when it comes to knowing how much water to use. Over time, you should be able to learn from previous experience. Then, you can apply what you have learned based on the result you have gotten from the frequency and amount of water.
Best Time to Water Your Tomato Plants
Now, this is the most straightforward piece of the puzzle.
The best time is always in the early morning. When the temperature is still cool, you can water your crops to let the moisture penetrate into the leaves instead of evaporating quickly in the air.
Furthermore, this can minimize the risk of burning your crops and causing diseases.
Use the water as efficiently as possible. Never allow a good amount of standing water since this can cause multiple problems over time.
And most importantly, never water your plants in the evening. It gets cooler at night, which causes the water to become cold. Hence, your plants are at a huge risk of suffering from health and growth issues.
How to Water Your Tomato Plants
Aside from knowing how much water and when to water your crops, you need to know the right technique of watering.
The rule of thumb is to water only the stem and roots of your tomato plants.
Avoid watering the leaves and the flowers at all cost. Otherwise, you are in for a major disaster with your crops.
Your plants need water in their root system. This is how they feed, which means you need to give their food straight to what collects it, which is the root.
We recommend using a garden hose instead of a sprinkler. A hose puts water straight into the root while a sprinkler simply puts excess water on your corps.
Then again, don’t just get any ordinary hose. You need to use a special soaker hose system. This way, you can position the hose as close to the stems as possible. You don’t even have to move it around. The soaker lets water come out slowly and gently, which causes it to penetrate into the ground.
If you have tomato plants in your yard, you should invest in good quality soaker hoses. You can never lose with this type of hose, which also lets you win half the battle.
It is always a trial and error for some people to know how much water their plants need.
But over time, this is something you are able to learn and master.
Essentially, you should always check how damp the ground is, how much rainfall you are expecting for the day, and whether or not the temperature is cool. All of these things determine the amount of water to give your tomatoes.
Most importantly, always water the stem and the roots instead of the leaves. Get the water straight into the soil where it is absorbed by the roots and turn into food for your crops. Do all of these things right, and you can expect a great yield during harvest season!