Summer is a wonderful season for gardeners, but it can also present unique challenges, especially in a place like Calgary where the weather can be unpredictable. Keeping your garden thriving in the summer heat takes careful attention to watering techniques and some summer plant care. 

Here are some essential summer watering tips for your Calgary garden to keep your garden healthy and lush.

Know Your Garden

Before we dive into the specific summer watering tips for your Calgary garden, it’s important to recognize that different plants have different watering needs. Things like plant type, soil, and sun exposure all affect how often and how much you should water your garden.

Summer Plant Care Basics

  1. Know Your Plants: Some plants, like succulents and drought-resistant varieties, need less water, while others, like vegetables and annual flowers, require more frequent watering. Group plants with similar water needs together to make your watering routine more efficient.

  2. Soil Matters: Well-drained soil helps prevent waterlogging and root rot. Adding organic matter like compost can improve soil structure and water retention, benefiting your plants in the long run.

  3. Mulching: Applying a layer of mulch around your plants can significantly reduce water evaporation, keep the soil cool, and suppress weeds. Organic mulches like wood chips or straws are excellent choices for maintaining soil moisture.

How to Water Plants in Hot Weather

Watering during the hot summer months requires a strategic approach to ensure that your plants receive the right amount of moisture without wasting water. Here are some effective tips on how to water plants in hot weather:

Best Practices for Efficient Watering

  1. Water Early or Late: The best times to water your garden are early in the morning or late in the evening. This reduces evaporation and allows plants to absorb moisture before the day’s heat sets in.

  2. Deep and Infrequent Watering: Instead of frequent shallow watering, aim for deep watering sessions for your summer plant care. This encourages roots to grow deeper into the soil, making plants more resilient to drought conditions.

  3. Use Soaker Hoses or Drip Irrigation: These summer watering tips for your Calgary garden, deliver water directly to the base of the plants, minimizing evaporation and ensuring that water reaches the roots where it’s needed most.

  4. Avoid Overwatering: Too much water can be just as harmful as too little. Overwatering can lead to root rot and other plant diseases. Check the soil moisture by sticking your finger about an inch into the soil. If it feels dry, it’s time to water.

Specific Tips for Calgary Gardeners

Calgary’s unique climate requires summer plant care to be particularly mindful of watering practices. Here are some tips tailored for the local environment:

Adapting to Calgary's Climate

  1. Monitor Weather Patterns: Knowing how to water plants in hot weather especially in Calgary where it can change rapidly is important. Keep an eye on forecasts and adjust your watering schedule accordingly. If rain is expected, you can skip watering for that day.

  2. Wind Protection: Wind can dry out plants quickly. Use windbreaks like fences or strategically placed shrubs to shield your garden from strong winds.

  3. Water Conservation: Given Calgary’s occasional water restrictions, it’s wise to adopt water-saving techniques. Rain barrels can collect rainwater for use in your garden, and drought-tolerant plants can reduce overall water needs.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Close-up of a gardener in beige overalls and gloves watering plants with a watering can in a lush vegetable garden, promoting healthy growth.
Even experienced gardeners can make mistakes when it comes to summer plant care. Here are some common pitfalls and how to avoid them:

Avoiding Common Pitfalls

  1. Watering the Leaves: Spraying water over the leaves can lead to fungal diseases and doesn’t efficiently reach the roots. Always water at the base of the plants to ensure that the roots absorb the moisture.

  2. Ignoring Soil Conditions: Not all soils are created equal. Sandy soils drain quickly and may need more frequent watering, while clay soils retain moisture longer but can become compacted. Adjust your watering based on the soil type.

  3. Inconsistent Watering: Inconsistent watering can stress plants, leading to poor growth and reduced yields. Establish a regular watering schedule that suits your garden’s needs and stick to it as closely as possible. Using Hard Water: Calgary’s tap water can be hard, which means it has a high mineral content. Over time, this can affect soil pH and plant health. Consider using rainwater or filtered water to mitigate this issue.

FAQs: Summer Watering Tips for Your Calgary Garden

In Calgary’s summer, it’s best to water your garden deeply and infrequently, about 2-3 times a week. Early mornings or late evenings are ideal to reduce evaporation.
Using soaker hoses or drip irrigation systems is highly effective in hot weather. These summer plant care methods deliver water directly to the roots, minimizing evaporation and ensuring efficient water usage.
Check the soil moisture by sticking your finger about an inch into the soil. If it feels dry, it’s time to water. Also, wilting leaves can be a sign that your plants need water.
While you can use tap water, Calgary’s tap water is often hard and high in minerals. Using rainwater or filtered water can be better for your plants over time to prevent soil pH issues.
To conserve water, use mulch to retain soil moisture, collect rainwater in barrels, and choose drought-tolerant plants. Adjust your watering schedule based on weather patterns and soil moisture levels.

Maintain Your Landscaping With Alchemy Landscape’s Expertise

Maintaining a lush and healthy garden in Calgary’s summer heat is entirely possible with the right watering strategies. By understanding your plants’ needs, adopting efficient watering practices, and staying mindful of the local climate, you can ensure that your garden remains vibrant throughout the season. Remember, proper summer plant care not only enhances the beauty of your garden but also contributes to the health and longevity of your plants.