Houseplant Watering 101: How should I water my plants?

One of the questions I get all of the time is this: what is the best way to water plants? Watering a plant is arguably the most important thing when it comes to plant care. There are a million scenarios that come into play. Let's talk about them! First things first, (as we talked about last time) DO NOT water plants according to someone else's schedule, and CHECK THE SOIL. Questions about that? Watch this.

My very first tip is this: your plant needs drainage. This is non negotiable. Not to be dramatic, but drainage is life and death for plants. In a newsletter soon we will go over my favorite planters and give you lots of planter tips, but for now– you need to know–does your planter have a drainage hole? Or does it not?

You need to know how to water your plant, depending on what type of planter it's in. It's IDEAL to have a planter with a drainage hole (makes your life so much easier!) but I more than anyone understand form over function. We all have planters without drainage, but it's not ideal. Next week we will talk about how to water plants without drainage. For now, the most important thing to understand is this: your plant needs to be able to have drainage no matter what.

It doesn't matter what type of plant you have, you always want to use enough water that it can fully saturate the soil and drain out of the drainage hole. You could literally use a 5 gallon bucket of water to water your plant!! Does that freak you out? It shouldn't!

People get really nervous because of the term overwatering. Overwatering has nothing to do with the amount of water we are using. Overwatering has to do with drainage and frequency. You want to make sure that as you water your plants, that their roots are saturated. That is going to make them SO happy! If the plant doesn't have drainage, then the roots will just sit in stagnant water. Roots that are sitting in that type of situation are just not going to be happy. They won't be getting the oxygen that they need!

Let's talk about watering plants that have drainage holes. (And again, next week we will cover plants in different planters.) I water all of those plants and them let them sit for a few minutes so I can make sure that the water really saturated all of the soil. When the water on the surface puddles, it's done. Then I take the plant to the sink, pull out the stopper/drain so that the water can leak out. This is ideal for smaller plants with drainage holes! It's super easy, fast, and you will quickly learn how much water those plants need.

If you are a visual person, feel free to check out my stories here, full of videos of me walking you through it all! Next week we will go over how to water plants without stoppers or drainage holes!