When to stop watering pot plants?

When to stop watering pot plants?

When to stop watering pot plants?

Hello Garden folks,

How is your garden blooming today? In this chaotic lifestyle, the beautiful garden can give us some relaxing time for ourselves. Hence when you put a lot of effort into it, it turns out to be a blooming or fresh edible fruit and veggie, and you are surely going to enjoy your garden time. But sometimes, garden folks are not happy with the outcome despite giving a lot of attention to it. So, why does this happen?

Of course, there are lots of things that trigger the garden smile. Sunlight, soil, watering, and many more. If something mismatches between these factors, the garden won’t give you a smile blooming. Let’s pick the watering technique today. We all know water is essential for all the plants out there. You can’t shower your garden with lots of water or make it die without plenty of water. So, what’s the catch? A gardener must know when and how to water his garden regularly. 

Do you actually know when to stop watering pot plants? Never mind. Welcome to Gardening Score! 

In this read, you will learn about plant watering and when to stop it. Let’s dive deep into plant watering!

Watering your plants in Different phases

It is a key to your green plants’ proper growth. Our garden has different stages, from seeds to grown plants. In this lifecycle, water is no doubt the best companion for plants. For example, the thumb rule for watering the flower garden in the growing season is one inch at least. On the other hand, fruit plants need three to four inches of water in the soil. So, the requirements are clear.

You can divide up the plants into three types based on water requirements. They are –

  • Low-watering plants: They do not need water every day. Water these plants once a week or ten days within. examples are cacti and succulent plants. Stop watering them very often like 1-day intervals because the plants can rot.
  • Medium watering plants: These plants require water within 4-5 days. Mostly indoor waters like spider plants and coin plants are in this category. So, these are easy-going plants in terms of watering.
  • High-watering plants: These are veggies, fruits, and flowers. Plants do not like soggy soil but you must water these plants within one-two day intervals so that the top soil is moist enough.

Again, your hardiness zone, the sunlight, humidity, plant type whether it’s a perennial/ annual and other things determine how much water the plant needs and when to stop watering the pot plants. So, the different stages of plants…

Seed-Germination stage

You need to take care of the seeds until they germinate. In that case, after sowing the seeds into the garden bed try to water them at least once a day. So, for the high-water requiring plants like fruits and vegetables try to keep the seeds damp until germination. Even after germination, seeds require water daily.

Seedling Stage

When finally, the seeds germinate and one/ two leaves peak at that time high-water demand arises. The seedlings cannot hold water for a long time, so one needs to water them regularly. Your seedlings will love a gentle splash of water. Don’t apply overhead watering that influences seedling rotting. When to stop watering the seedlings? At the moment, you see the seedlings are becoming yellow, you will stop over-watering. 24-48 hours gap of watering is perfect for seedlings.

Grown plants

When your plants are mature enough and heading to fruiting or flowering season on that time water requirement is different. It mostly depends on the area you are living. When it’s summer water your mature plants within one-two day. In the case of winter, try to go with mulching that gives enough water for your plants. Deeply water your mature plants once twice a week because they are going for production and require more energy.


It is a very special stage of every fruiting and flowering plant. Thus the watering technique is also special. We have watered the plant for so long to get the fruits, right? Before harvesting, when to stop watering pot plants? Well, 3-7 days before harvesting, the gardener should stop watering the plants. In this way, the plant will be cautious about drought resistance and transfer all its nutrients to the desired harvest. Though the water stop rule for harvesting can differ from plant to plant, most plants need 3-7 days off from water before fruit/veggie harvesting. 

During this time, the plant will put all its effort into saving those flowering buds and keeping the buds healthy. It is also known as the stress reaction phase before harvesting.

How to water the plants after fertilizing them?

Well, fertilizers are needed for optimum plant growth. There are different kinds of fertilizers. Some are liquid and some are a dry mixture. Immediate watering is always suggested when you add fertilizer to your garden beds or potting mix. However, when to stop watering the pot plants? You need to stop immediate watering when you apply the liquid fertilizer.

When to stop watering pot plants?
Image Source: Canva

Mainly mineral and organic fertilizers are liquid fertilizers. So, when you apply these fertilizers avoid immediate watering and wait for 3-5 hours. As a result, the fertilizer will mix well with the soil and they will not wash away.

Early morning is the best time to apply water to your plants it will help your plants to hold the water. Rainy seasons help to set the fertilizer in the soil. So, natural watering is an option as well.

Flushing before harvesting

You can’t water pot plants before harvesting. But flushing instead of watering is a super hack that can bring you a lovely blossom. When the plant stops getting water it will eventually protect the buds and fruits. 

And that’s when your harvesting time comes sooner. Fertilizing and watering create a salt network and other nutrients in the soil. To remove those extra fertilizers and nutrients, you need water flushing.

So, how does it happen? The outdoor gardens get natural water flushing by rain. But what happens to the pot plants? You can water the plant pot until you see a full flow of runoff from the bottom of the pot. It is recommended that 20-30% of the volume will be less by flushing. So, doing this several times before harvesting can make the plants healthier with a healthy harvest.

Some plant watering tips

Try to recognize the thirst of your plants during the different seasons of the year. In summer, your plants are thirsty like ever and require the most watering. Then in spring and autumn the plants kind of settle down and become forgiving the gardeners even if you forget to water them daily. So, the seasonal impact has a great role.

Remember, when to stop watering pot plants is a necessary thing to keep eye on. Because excess watering damages the root system and clogs the soil pores. The plants reduce transpiration and photosynthesis due to water logging on plant roots. Hence, the flowering is less. It is found in an Agricultural Water Management report.


Here are some interesting questions related to when to stop watering pot plants. Because we all know water is essential but when people hear to stop watering the plants, they find it weird. So, some popular questions are:

Should I let my plants dry out before harvest?
Of course not. But according to the horticulturists, it is better to stop watering 2- 3 days earlier of harvest. It will help the plant to initiate healthy, nutritious buds. Plants don’t love wet feet. But again don’t dry them. Less watering for a week/10 days can make your plant wilt.

Do pot plants need to be watered every day?
This depends on your plant type. If you have thirsty plants, then water them regularly. Otherwise, the leaves will become yellow. In contrast, indoor plants are happy with even less watering. California Poppies and Rose mallow, etc need daily watering.

Should I spray my buds with water?
It can be a great idea. Overhead watering is not recommended but when you spray the plant buds it will help them to get bigger.

When to stop watering my outdoor plants?
It is similar to pot plants. You need to stop watering the garden bed for 2-3 days before harvesting.

Final thoughts

So, now you are pretty much familiar with when to stop watering pot plants. Following this will you to have a healthy bunch of harvest and less root damage. 

Gardeners must count watering as a tricky task. Plants don’t like excess/ less water in a way. Try to consider the harvesting time, seasons, humidity, and temperature. And foremost, the plant type and its need for water.

In a nutshell, don’t randomly put water on your plants. Try to know the timing, type, and harvesting season to see the garden bloom forever and a day!

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