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What is Too Much Water?

What is too much water?

Too much water is really not about the water but the lack of oxygen in the soil. When water from a sprinkler system, rain fall or hose penetrates the soil if enough is applied the water will fill the air cavities with water. If this condition stay in place too long (ie weeks) it cuts off the oxygen supply and suffocates that plant. All plants need water oxygen and nutrients form the soil, what is not apparent above ground is the amount of air cavities and water available to the root system. Plants need cycles of wet dry wet dry so they can drink and then breathe. Think of them as wales they don’t need to breathe as often as humans but they do need to come up for air. A tree week wet period with little relief from rain or sprinkler system is the long end of a cycle without air. The shallower the root system (think grass or annual flowers) the quicker the dry out or breathe cycle can be. Water heavily for a few days or week and then back off for a few days, this is what nature does.

Thanks for reading,

Richard Poynter, President Poynter Landscape Architecture & Construction