Introduction to Watering Crops

Plants need water to grow, but not all plants need to be watered in the same way. Different plants need different amounts of water at different times. Watering too much or too frequently can damage plants. The most important way to mitigate dry periods is proper soil preparation. Well prepared soil holds water better. Applying mulch on top of soil also helps to slow water loss through evaporation. Here are the most important times to water for different crops.

Vegetable Most Important Time To Water
Corn Silking, Tasseling, and Ear Development
Legumes (Peas, Peanuts, Beans) Flowering to Pod Development
Brassica (Cabbage, Cauliflower, Broccoli) Head Formation
Root Crops (Onion, Carrot, Potato, Radish) Root and Tuber Development
Cucurbit (Cucubmer, Melon, Squash) Flowering to Fruit Development
Night Shades (Eggplant, Pepper, Tomato) Uniformly Flowering to Harvest

How to Water

Plants should be watered around their base and not showered with water from above. Wet leaves can become covered in mold and mildew that harms the plants. In hot weather, water on the leaves can also evaporate quickly and not reach roots if it is left to trickle off the upper parts of plants.

Water Tank Service

For a fee of $100, program participants can lease a 275 gallon water tank for the season. Payment for the tank is made at the same time as the leasing fee is paid. The tank is delivered to the site full of water in early summer and the participant may request two additional refills. At the end of the season, tanks are removed from the site by the City and put into storage. Each tank has a magnetic key lock on the spout and the key for the lock must be returned to the City at the end of the season.