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Watering the dirt

Hi, Sorry if this is one of those dumb questions. I really am a beginner. So, I pulled my finished plants, now I have dirt. Question is, should I water the dirt until my seedlings are ready to transplant, or let it dry out?
God made rainy days so gardeners could get the housework done. ~Author Unknown
Sunset Zone 24
USDA zone 10

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Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2008 1:04 am
Location: Oregon

I would say that depends on how soon you expect to transplant the seedlings. If you allow the soil to dry out completely, it can become quite hard. In my area, it becomes almost rock-like.

I don't usually water areas where there is nothing growing, but about 3 to 5 days before I go out to plant, I put a soaker hose in the area and let it run. Otherwise, getting a spade or trowel into the ground is a hopeless proposition. :lol:

If you're planning to set out your starts within the coming week or two, I would keep the area watered a bit in the meantime, just to keep the soil workable. JMO. :)
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams

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Super Green Thumb
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Location: Wentzville, MO (Just West oF St. Louis) Zone 5B

On another note I will water around my plants as well as my plants. The reason being as said above if you don't water around your plants( like in between rows or whatever) the water will be sucked up in the dry area away from your plants.

I do from time to time water the whole garden even if there is nothing in there just to keep the little ones going (microbes, bacteria etc.) I may be wrong in this but that is what I do. I also fertilize (organically) non used spaces as well just to keep up on the nutrients just in case.

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No Gixx, you are correct; microbes need moisture. Dessication is the most definite sterilant; nothing survives dry (o.k. brine shrimp can do it, and a couple bacteria, but it's a short list). Keeping the soil organisms alive has a benefit and watering (with a good mulch to keep it in an provide a moisture barrier; I like compost) is a good way to do that.

I would (but I have rain barrels that get filled pretty regular).

Scott Reil

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