“I water my plants once every 2 days”
“I water my plants every Fridays”
If you too have been doing this let me tell you- it’s not a great idea!
And if you ask me “How often should I water any particular plant?” I’m sorry I can’t give you a solid schedule. Because there are a lot of factors that affect watering schedule and based on these factors, what duration works for me might not work for you.
Light Exposure- More light falls on the plant faster the soil dries out hence more frequent watering (and vice versa).
For example- Both of us have a ZZ Plant. You keep yours next to an east facing window and I keep it in a spot that gets no direct sunlight. Now you might have to water your ZZ way more frequently than me.
Seasons- Plants need to be watered more often during summers and less often in monsoons. So say if you're watering your ZZ approximately once a week during summers then as monsoon sets in you can extend it approximately to once in 15-20 days. This is again related to light exposure. So the same plant in the same spot is watered differently throughout different seasons.
Type of pot- Lets take the same ZZ plant. One of us has it in a ceramic planter and the other in a terracotta pot. Terracotta being porous, the soil dries out faster than the ceramic one. So ZZ in a terracotta pot has to be watered more often than the ZZ in ceramic .
(Plants in terracotta pots have to be watered more frequently than plants in ceramic/ plastic pots).
Type of plant- Succulents and succulent like plants (plants with thick leaves like ZZ, few Peperomias, Dischidias, Orchids) have to be watered way less frequently than Ferns, Peace Lily, Calatheas. Now please note that less frequently doesn’t mean less water. More on this in a different blog.
Soil- the constituents of your potting soil also matters when it comes to watering frequency. If your soil has more cocopeat and compost it tends to hold moisture for a longer duration and therefore watering can be less frequent. Contrary if the soil has lots of perlite, rice husk, charcoal the soil tends to dry out faster.
You see how so many things together contribute to “How Often to Water a Plant” and why you shouldn’t stick to a general schedule of once in x days.
Instead here’s what you can do. Once you get or repot a Houseplant and place it in your desired spot, water it thoroughly. Then notice how long it’s taking for the soil to dry out before the next watering. Based on this, set an approximate duration for the plant. This can vary a day or two depending on the weather.And if someone asks you “How often you water a particular plant” forward this article to them