Features of watering watermelons
The main agricultural technique that provides a good crop of gourds is proper watering, taking into account the phases of vegetation. Without sufficient moisture, the fruits lose much in weight and taste. Read about the irrigation regimen needed for watermelons growing in open ground below.
Do I need to water my watermelons
Throughout the entire period of active vegetation, watermelons and melons need moisture. Especially important for gourds - a sufficient supply of water after emergence. Whether watermelons should be watered is decided individually in each individual case, because there are a sufficient number of factors that directly affect the intensity and mode of this agrotechnical technique.Soil quality will affect the intensity of irrigation: loose light soils absorb moisture faster, so you need to irrigate the land more often. Previously, watermelons were cultivated only in the southern latitudes, but today, thanks to the work of breeders, there are varieties that grow well in the central areas where the climate is more humid. It is from climatic conditions that the frequency of irrigation depends. In regions with a large amount of annual rainfall, watering can be carried out only in the initial phases of the growing season, and then it is completely canceled.
Another factor is the location of groundwater. If they are located within 1 m, watering should be carried out much less frequently than where they are at a depth of 2 m. In addition, the care methods and the correctness of other agricultural practices, such as loosening the soil and mulching, have a direct impact on the intensity of watering. . When performing the latter, moisture is much longer stored in the soil, so the interval between watering will be increased.
How to determine that a watermelon should be watered
The need for moisture is determined based on the condition of the soil. Do not allow overdrying of the soil layer to a depth of more than 5 cm. You can check the moisture with a wooden stick. If after immersion in the soil to a depth of 5 cm, dirt remains on it, watering is not performed.
How often to water seedlings of watermelons in the open ground
Plants transplanted into the open ground before flowering are watered once every 2 days, under the root, from a watering can with a long "nose." Before planting the crop, it is necessary to greatly moisten the soil. After transplanting the seedlings, watering is carried out for the first time after 5 days. If heavy rain has passed, the next hydration is carried out after 5 days. Water consumption per plant is 3 liters.
Did you know? Watermelon native to the Kalahari Desert, located in South Africa. Even today you can meet wild specimens there.
Basic rules and irrigation technology
When carrying out irrigation, it is necessary to take into account the features of the development of culture for each specific phase of the growing season. All varieties and hybrids of watermelons are drought-resistant crops. This is due to the ability of the root system to absorb moisture from the soil. The roots of the plant retain this ability even with a soil moisture of 6%, while the absorption force is 10 atmospheres.The rhizome of the watermelon plant consists of the main root, going down to a depth of 1 m, and a large number of additional roots, covering from 7 to 10 m³ of soil at a depth of 30 cm. Despite the drought tolerance, the culture has a rather high level of water consumption. To obtain 5 kg of fruit, the plant needs 160 liters of water.
The largest amount of moisture is needed for plants during flowering and ovary formation.To facilitate the task, it is necessary to study the indicators of the transpiration coefficient at different phases of plant development. Transpiration is the amount of moisture that the plant body consumes to form 1 g of dry matter.
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Waterlogging also negatively affects the development of culture, causing growth retardation and a decrease in product quality. The most important thing when growing watermelons is to maintain an optimal level of humidity at about the same level, because fluctuations in this indicator lead to fibrous fruits, apical rot.
Important! After watering, be sure to loosen the soil under the bushes, otherwise the moisture will not be correctly distributed in the soil, which will lead to decay of the roots.
Basic rules for watering watermelons:
- Use non-cold water for irrigation.
- Only apply moisture in the morning or evening when there is no strong sunshine.
- Make sure that water does not get into the leaf sinuses.
- If the irrigation intensity is 3-4 times a week, add 3 l of liquid under the bush, while moistening the soil 1 time per week - pour at least 5-7 l under the bush.
- In the flowering phase, watering should be often (once every 2-3 days), but not plentifully, but during the formation of the ovary, on the contrary - less often (once every 7 days), but more liquid should be added.
- Stop watering the crop should be completely 7 days before harvesting.
The most suitable method of introducing water into the soil is a drip irrigation system. It allows you to rationally use water resources by supplying water in doses. In addition, the drip system completely eliminates the contact of leaves with liquid.To organize such irrigation, a water supply pipe is laid in the row-spacings, and from it do bends for each bush except drip irrigation, You can use the traditional method of feeding water into the furrows between the rows. This approach allows you to make a large amount of liquid in a short period of time, excluding contact of the ground part with water. The irrigation method when cultivating watermelons is impractical, since when it is used, moisture gets on the leaves and sinuses, which can cause rotting of plant tissues.
Important! If cloudy weather without precipitation is established, the intensity of irrigation must be reduced to 1 time per week.
Tips from experienced gardeners
A few recommendations regarding growing watermelons:
- When choosing a variety of gourds, consider the features of your region - all varieties of plants are suitable for the southern latitudes, and in the central regions, one should give preference to early and mid-ripening crops, in the northern regions only early varieties and hybrids will have time to ripen.
- In order for the watermelon to fully ripen, it is necessary to choose a site with good lighting - in the shade, the fruits will develop poorly and will not gain enough sweetness.
- Thoroughly clean weeds after planting seedlings, otherwise, young watermelon plantings may die.
- After watering and loosening, mulch the soil with fresh grass. - this will help to save moisture and protect plants from pests. In addition, during subsequent loosening procedures, part of the mulch will fall into the soil, where the process of decay will begin, which will make it an excellent organic feed.
Did you know? Watermelon fruit is a multi-seeded juicy pumpkin.
Watermelons need regular watering, which should be carried out strictly in accordance with the phases of the growing season and weather conditions. The optimal approach to the implementation of this agricultural method is the organization of a drip irrigation system. But if there are not too many plants on the site, you can use a watering can or add water along the furrows in the aisles.