The question of watering plants while it’s raining may seem strange at first, but it actually raises several interesting points. Indeed, although it may seem counter-intuitive, watering your plants when the weather is humid not necessarily a bad idea in some situations. In this article, we will explore the different aspects related to this practice and try to answer the question: Is watering plants when it rains really necessary or useless?
What do you need to know about the water needs of plants?
To properly address this topic, one must first understand how water uptake by the plants and what are their real requirements. Plants need water to live and grow, it is an undeniable fact. However, the amount of water needed varies considerably depending on the species, the climatic conditions and the peculiarities of the soil.
The different types of plants
Not all plants have the same water needs. For example, succulents and cacti have evolved mechanisms that allow them to survive on very little water. Conversely, some aquatic plants can only grow in constantly humid environments. Thus, it is essential to know the specifics of each plant to determine if additional watering is necessary when it rains.
Climate also plays an important role in plant water requirements. Indeed, during periods of high heat or prolonged drought, water evaporation is faster and plants may need more watering to compensate for this loss. Conversely, in the event of frequent rain and milder temperatures, the water needs of plants are generally lower.
The impact of soil on plant watering
The type of floor in which plants are grown has a direct bearing on their ability to retain water. Some soils drain water quickly, while others retain it more effectively. Thus, it is important to take the soil into account before deciding to water your plants in the rain.
Sandy and stony soils are particularly draining, which means that they allow water to pass quickly. Under these conditions, even in the event of heavy rain, water may not be retained sufficiently by the soil to meet the needs of the plants. In this case, additional watering may be necessary to ensure an adequate supply of water.
Water retaining soils
Conversely, clay and loamy soils have a higher water retention capacity. They can therefore store more water when it rains, usually making additional watering unnecessary. Watering the plants in these conditions could even be harmful, causing an excess of water which can lead to rotting of the roots and the proliferation of diseases.
Watering plants in the rain: the pros and cons
As we saw earlier, there is no universal answer to this question. It all depends on the specifics of each situation. However, it is possible to highlight some advantages and disadvantages related to the watering of plants under the rain.
The potential benefits
- Better water supply: In certain situations, especially when the soil is particularly draining or when the water needs of the plants are high, watering in the rain can ensure a sufficient supply of water to promote their growth.
- Optimal use of rainwater: Rainwater is naturally soft and low in lime, making it an excellent watering source for plants. Watering in the rain therefore makes it possible to take full advantage of this free and ecological resource.
The potential drawbacks
- A risk of excess water: As mentioned earlier, watering plants when the soil is already waterlogged can cause excess moisture that is harmful to the root system and promotes disease outbreaks.
- Water loss: If watering is not necessary, it is a loss of water that could have been saved for later use or for other uses.
In summary, watering the plants when it rains can be a good idea in certain specific situations, especially when the soil has a low water retention capacity and the needs of the plants are high. In other cases, it is generally preferable to avoid this additional watering so as not to risk causing an excess of water harmful to the health of the plants.