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Aida
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How much to water radish, sunflower, tomato, strawberry?

Hey guys!

Recently I planted radishes and sunflowers outside, and tomatoes inside. Everything is sprouting, but now I'm not sure how much to water all these things. The tomatoes are currently inside, so I am bottom watering when needed. I know that when they are transplanted, they will need 2" of water per day?

I really don't understand how much "2''" of water is- how do I measure that? I really wanted to bury a container in the ground, and pour water into that, as suggested by one of the stickies. How many containers for about 8 tomato plants?

Also, what about the others? The sunflowers and radishes are planted in the same bed, in full sun. The bed is about 10 feet by 7 feet. Would it be okay to plant the tomatoes in there with them? Can some plants get overwatered, while other plants(getting the same amount) underwatered? I water with a hose.

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Aida
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Oh, the strawberries would be in another bed of their own- I'm going to guess about 3 plants at first that I get from a nursery.

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rainbowgardener
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I don't know where you heard two inches of water a day!!! That is a huge amount. Usually they say one inch of water a week, at least for plants in the ground.

If you are growing things in containers, it might need more/ more frequent watering.

Not clear to me whether you are talking about growing in containers or in the ground. You mentioned containers for tomatoes and then you mentioned a 10x7 plot.

If containers, tomatoes are ONE plant to a LARGE container, at least 5 gallon bucket sized, if not more.

10x7 would be enough for your 8 tomato plants, but then you wouldn't have room for the other stuff.

You have to watch out for things shading each other out.

I don't worry so much about the inches of water. Just water thoroughly and deeply and then don't do it again until the top few inches of the soil have dried out. For hose watering the ground (don't sprinkle, just put water in the soil), run the hose until the water puddles, let the puddle soak in and then do that two more times. Then they are probably ok for a week, except maybe in very hot dry weather.
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applestar
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Right. Usually when garden watering is measured in inches, it means if you leave out a straight sided container in the rain or while the garden is watered with overhad sprinklers, and x inch deep water is collected in the container -- in this case, 2 inches... and that IS a lot of water.

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ElizabethB
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Aida - in south Louisiana summer watering is always an issue. I weave soaker hoses through my garden. Every other day I haul the regular hose to the garden and hook it up in the evening. I have timer on my hose bib. I set it to go off at 3 am and run for 2 hours. There are times when I set them up daily - extreme heat and drought - in violation of city watering days. :oops:

My 2 cents. :)
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digitS'
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My gardens have very rapidly draining soil; it is very rocky. Also, this is an arid climate - less than 20" of precipitation and most of that falling as winter snow. It is very different from Florida. That rocky soil; it is glacial till :wink: .

Anyway, there is a dry summer and soil moisture doesn't stay around very well.

My gardens are large and there is irrigation water. I put down 3/4" at a time for about 1 1/2" of water each week and have measured and timed it, just as Applestar has suggested. I know that there are quite a few weeks when 3 times a week would be better but less than 3/4" doesn't seem very beneficial. Further, I just cannot be out there with the sprinklers more than twice thru the week.

I think my garden conditions are fairly extreme in water needs. I might be willing to put 2" of water at once on my tomatoes but then would give them several days before watering again. They wouldn't need 2", twice a week, tho'.

Steve
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jal_ut
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How much water? Depends some on the soil and humidity of the air, temperature, and how dense the planting is. The tomatoes indoors in containers, probably give them a drink daily. Outdoors an inch over the whole area per week should suffice.

Here we have sprinkler irrigation and I run the rainbirds for 12 hours once a week. That puts down a little over an inch of water on the whole area. If you put a straight sided container as suggested you can catch water and see how much is applied.

If you are not sprinkling, just water until the soil is wetted well.

The soil needs to be damp, but not soggy. If plants wilt, you know they need water.

Plants that have just been transplanted, will benefit from a daily watering for a few days until the roots get established.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

imafan26
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How much to water? When needed.
Do the stick the finger in the soil test. If it is still moist wait a day. If the plant isn't complaining by drooping or wilting you can wait a tad more. Let the plants talk to you and tell you when they need it.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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Aida
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Oh jeez guys, I'm sorry about not being clear- I'm only starting the tomatoes indoors. They are being transplanted outside as soon as they get big enough. :)

So far I've been just sprinkling over the plot once every two days or so, but now I'm going to soak it throughly once a week like most of you advised. It gets pretty hot here at times, but it's the humid, not dry, hot- so I think that'll be ok. If not, I'll just have to alter it again. :)

imafan26
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To conserve on water, mulch it too.
80% humidity is the norm here, but 88 degree temperatures and wind means that the soil surface will dry quickly. Mulching will help keep the water in the soil and not evaporate off.
Put a drip system or soaker under the mulch otherwise you will be watering the mulch more than anything else. I found that out the hard way.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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rainbowgardener
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Well like most things in gardening, it depends.

So what's in the plot right now? Seeds, seedlings? Seeds need to never dry out, so watering a little bit every other day, or even every day in hot, dry weather is what you need to do for a plot planted in seeds. Once the seeds are well sprouted (i.e. have true leaves), you can back off a little, but they still have very small root systems. So they can't be left alone as long as when they are better established. So you have to get to the water deeply and then leave alone for a week (or so depending on conditions) gradually.

Sorry, but it helps to be very clear what you are asking about. In any case 2" a day is way too much. If you were putting that much water on seeds, they would either wash away or rot out.

Imafan is right about the mulch being very important, but only after the seeds have sprouted and are tall enough to be above the mulch. (If needed you can add more mulch as the plants grow.) One of the things mulch does is suppress the growth of weeds and germination of weed seeds, but it will do the same to your vegetable seeds if they are under there.

For your one 10 x 7 plot, there is no reason at all to mess with soaker hose and irrigation systems. You need to keep a little circle around the plant stem free of mulch anyway. For air circulation and less bug problems, you don't want mulch touching your plants. So you just put your hose in the circle and water the ground there. Remember, you are not sprinkling, just putting water in your soil. (Again, once all the seeds are sprouted and you have established plants. The only thing I sprinkle is a bed full of seeds - sorry that's the way gardening is, very few blanket statements you can make)
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prettygurl
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Make sure that the strawberries are in well drained soil and don't over water them.



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