Coneflowers are one of the most popular perennial plants with gardeners. It comes in several varieties and cultivars and its bright colours are a cheerful sight at any time.
When planting coneflowers, it is important that you water them correctly as over watering or under watering can affect the plant negatively.
Coneflowers typically need about an inch of water weekly to be just fine.
A lot of backyard gardeners who want to cultivate coneflowers are sometimes confused about the basics.
This post will discuss why plants need water, how much water coneflowers need and other related questions you might have.
Why Do Plants Need Water?
Water is one of the nutrients needed by plants to live, grow and survive.
Plants are almost all water, and they require water for the important processes which help them to stay alive.
Water gives plants their shape, size, food, ability to control their body temperature, and their whole environment.
There are several reasons why plants need a regular supply of water and we will enumerate some of them below:
- Seed Germination
Right from the seed stage, the plants require water to activate the enzymes that will kickstart the germination process. After taking in water, the hard shells start to soften.
This allows the seed to grow bigger and finally break open. The growth process starts with this breakthrough and again water is required for continued growth.
Photosynthesis is an important process in plant germination and development. It is how plants utilize energy from the sun to make glucose with the help of water and carbon dioxide.
Plants are not able to take in light if they do not have enough water. They also cannot make food to survive and would die.
Without water, plants couldn’t take in light and make food, so they would die. As such water is an essential nutrient for survival.
- Temperature Regulation
Water also works to regulate the plants temperature through the process of transpiration. Transpiration happens when water from the stems and leaves of a plant evaporates into the air.
During hot weather, the loss of through the transpiration process helps the plants cool down. This flow gives the plant a steady flow of nutrients and energy.
- Circulation of Essential Nutrients
Another important function of water for plants is the carriage of nutrients from the soil to the plant. Water helps provide food for the plant.
This is because the nutrients have to be dissolved before they can be taken in by the plant. The absence or inadequacy of water in the plant means the nutrients cannot be absorbed.
- Ecosystem Support
We all know that beneficial microbes and organisms live in the soil. They include fungi, bacteria and other microorganisms.
These organisms are essential not only to the soil ecosystem but to the plants as well.
Water helps them thrive in the soil. Without water, in the soil, it will lead to an imbalance and disrupt the soil ecosystem.
Here is an article I wrote on how to transport coneflowers
How Much Water Do Coneflowers Need?
Coneflowers when matured develop an extensive root system that is hardy.
However, if you underwater or overwater the plant while growing, it would lead to a negative impact on the plant.
Coneflowers generally prefer dry to medium soil moisture and are known to be drought tolerant.
However, it is possible for them to get too wet or dry. Coneflowers usually need extra irrigation in their first season especially when they are just planted.
During this first season, water the plant whenever the top inch of soil seems dry. This can occur every two days or once a month, depending on the weather.
It is important that you range the water based on the level of rainfall you get.
Let the soil completely dry between waterings.
You may not need to water the plants again after it is established.
Depending on the soil and weather conditions, you may need to water the plant every 1-2 months if you reside in a hot, dry climate.
Can Coneflowers Be Overwatered?
Yes, it is very much possible for coneflowers to be overwatered.
Coneflowers do not like wet conditions and will typically not thrive in wet soil.
That is why it is critical not to overwater your plant or place it in a location in your garden that can have standing water or constantly wet soil at any time of year.
Coneflowers can appear green but still be in poor health. This could be the result of overwatering. Stem rot and powdery mildew are two other negative effects of overwatering on plants.
Coneflowers require less water than many other plants, so stem rot is usually caused by overwatering.
Powdery mildew on the other hand is a combination of both too much moisture in the soil and bad flow of oxygen.
Overwatering coneflowers is a mistake gardeners often make and you have to be careful not to do so.
Also check out this article I wrote on why do coneflowers turn black
Why Are My Coneflowers Drooping?
Aside from overwatering, another issue with Coneflower cultivation is underwatering. Droopy or wilting leaves are a major indicator that your plant is drowning.
Water your plant as soon as you notice things like wilting or drooping leaves, dry and cracked soil and or dry leaves that turn yellow.
After watering the plant, keep a close eye on it for the next few weeks to ensure it is getting enough moisture.
When your coneflower plant is underwatered, it is not able to absorb the essential nutrients. As such, it becomes unhealthy and exhibits the characteristics listed above.
Although coneflowers are reputed for being drought resistant, they still require some level of water from time to time.
Should I Deadhead My Coneflowers?
Deadheading is the process of removing spent flowers and stems that contain several spent flowers.
The stems are usually cut right above a leaf node, or at their root.
Energy is the diverted from reproductive to vegetative development, leading in lateral expansion and ultimately more buds and blooms.
Deadheading your coneflowers in the summer involves removing spent blooms.
Deadheading is typically performed to maintain the plant’s appearance, prevent the spread of its seeds, and encourage the plant to produce additional flowers.
Coneflowers benefit greatly from deadheading, as it encourages abundant flowering.
In the end, you have an abundance of blossoms throughout the summer and get to appreciate your flowers.
How Do You Keep Coneflowers Healthy?
After planting your coneflowers, it is important that you keep them healthy so you can enjoy the blooms for a longer period of time.
Once coneflowers have matured, they are usually very easy to maintain.
During the first growth season, ensure the soil is well treated and watered.
Although coneflowers do not like too much water, they should also not be underwatered.
Deadheading and division is also a great way to ensure your plants are not bushy and they get enough air and nutrients circulation.
Also ensure they are getting enough light.
Coneflower planting and cultivation is definitely an exciting experience.
Water is a very important component of planting. It is important for different reasons such as nutrient circulation, transpiration, photosynthesis to mention a few.
Coneflowers can get underwatered or overwatered. You have to be careful not to let the plants get diseases from overwatering.
A sign of underwatering is a droopy look.
In all remember to keep your plant healthy and have fun.