For more information on general watering practices read "Water Your Way to Happy Plants." For more information on general watering practices read "Watering Container Plants." How To Fix An Overwatered Plant – Step By Step Guide. Unfortunately, overwatering is one that can cause yellow leaves, stunting and other plant problems. It may even call forth the deadly disease of root rot. It’s important to know the signs of overwatering, how to prevent it, and how to fix an overwatered plant if it happens.
How to Fix an Overwatered Plant: Stop watering your plant temporarily and improve drainage. Consider changing the pot and soil to promote better drainage and faster soil drying. Provide increased ventilation and temperatures, and lower humidity. Overwatering is the number one cause of death for container plants. Some specimens will shrug off desert conditions, poor soil, low light, and trampled neglect only to call it quits after an overdose of water. Watering is how beginners show their love, and it’s wrong? The contradiction is confusing until you understand what’s going on. Overwatering is harmful to a plant in two ways: Overwatering Drowns The Roots.
One of the primary root functions is gas exchange: they need to draw oxygen from their soil. A flooded mix drowns the roots and suffocates the plant. By blocking oxygen from the root zone, overwatering creates the anaerobic environment in which disease pathogens grow and thrive. Correct watering in well-draining soil leaves the mix damp enough for plants to obtain moisture and nutrients while providing sufficient aeration for the root system to breathe. Short-term soaking (5-10 minutes) doesn’t harm the plant as long as the soil is immediately and thoroughly drained. An overwatered plant can look like an underwatered one, and it’s very important to know the difference. One more false move with your watering can could spell disaster. Check the soil and review the plant’s recent watering schedule. Always make sure the soil has properly dried before rewatering. Besides soggy soil, here are symptoms of an overwatered plant: Wilting. This is a common sign of underwatering, but plants that have their nutrient flow shut down by overwatering can wilt, too. The foliage of an underwatered plant becomes dry and crispy. This looks like blisters and is caused by excess water in plant cells. The presence of powdery mildew, soil gnats, or other moisture-loving pests. It’s much better to prevent overwatering than have to fix an overwatered plant in the first place. Understanding the reasons for overwatering helps you take steps to prevent it. It can take experience to realize that too much water is worse than too little and that it’s not the solution to every plant malady. It can easily happen when caring for a group of houseplants together. Plants have individual water needs: what makes your Peace Lily happy will drown a succulent. The rule is to always check the soil before rewatering. The main contributor to overwatering is poor drainage. It’s not necessarily the quantity of water a plant receives; it’s how long the soil stays excessively wet. Note that a well-draining mix with a lot of organic material can become compacted over time as the additives decompose. Inert, non-decaying media like pumice, perlite, or coarse sand are a more stable choice if you don’t replace the soil often.
Different species vary in how much water they need, so you have to learn the needs of your individual plants. If you put all your houseplants on the same watering schedule you’ll risk overwatering some of them. Incidentally, the difference between plants is usually not in how they are watered: saturating the soil is usually correct. The important difference is in their ideal soil composition and how dry the mix should get between sessions. For example, a cactus’ soil should be as deeply soaked when watered as a thirsty fern; the difference is that a succulent’s soil should very drain quickly and be allowed to become much drier between rewettings. Water evaporates more quickly in warmer conditions and vice versa. If you water on a schedule based on warm temperatures, you can easily overdo it in cooler weather. Larger pots take in more water and are slower to dry out.
One common scenario for overwatering is to continue the same frequency after repotting into a larger container.