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Watering - Hand Watering Methods

You realize the plant needs water (that gasping noise it makes is unmistakable). Now, how to deliver the precious liquid to its target? There are several methods of doing so, each with good and bad points, and most experts recommend a combination of at least the first two as the best approach:

Top Watering 

This is very good at flushing away any excess fertilizer salts that collect in the plant, but it can be an ineffective watering method. If the soil pulls away from the sides of the pot, water will run right through. Some fragile plants are also very susceptible to damage when water gets on them. A much better method for plants such as this is:

Bottom Watering 

To ensure thorough watering, this method is best. Fill the saucer that the pot rests on, letting the plant drink as much as it wants. Remember to empty the saucer after 30 minutes to avoid letting the plant set too long in water, which can lead to root rot.

Total Immersion

 A bit drastic, but it does insure that water reaches the entire plant. Place the plant into a sink or container so that water is one inch over the top of the pot. After all the bubbles have disappeared, take the pot out and let it drip dry.