| The bio-intensive approach to small-scale household food production |
One of the most critical factors for successful gardening is water. Poor watering practices can stunt plant growth and can even be fatal to plants. As a rule, plants should be watered thoroughly but infrequently. Thorough watering dampens the soil. This allows the water to move down through the soil by progressively satisfying the waterholding capacity of every soil particle. Likewise, well-sequenced watering allows the water to sink slowly and the soil surface to dry up. These conditions encourage the development of a deep root system.
Plants are deep-rooted and can withstand drought periods because they rely on subsoil water.
Plants are shallow-rooted and suffer with even a slight reduction in moisture availability; plants become dependent on applied water.
Note: This does not apply to young plants (i.e., less than 40 days old), which need daily watering in dry weather.