Sustainability is taking centre stage when it comes to home gardens. With erratic rainfall, increasing average temperature, and water shortages, the need to seek alternatives for water-saving strategies is on the rise.
Water crystals are one such practice that reduces water usage for potted plants, gardens, lawns, and fields while providing appropriate hydration to plants. You can browse through options of water crystal at Plant Doctor or similar online stores.
According to YourHome, an initiative by the Australian Government for environmentally sustainable homes, around 40% of the water in Australian homes is used outdoors. They recommend adopting preventative, organisational, and redesigning best practices to reduce water usage for home gardens.
What Are Water Crystals?
Water crystals are polymers designed to absorb water like a sponge. They can hold water weighing many hundred times their size. These crystals then gradually release this absorbed water into the soil. These crystals can be used in:
- Indoor herb garden
- Outdoor flower garden
- Large irrigated fields
Water crystals are available with dry and wet applications. You can mix the dry water crystals with the soil and then water the plant for the absorption process to begin. Water crystals are usually available in the form of a gel in which you can dip the roots of the plant or dig holes around plants and fill them with gel-based water crystals.
Benefits of Using Water Crystals for Your Home Garden
Hydration Source for Plants
Excess water received with rainfall or overwatering plants are not all absorbed by the soil. They run down your pavement or pool at the base of the pot and eventually get evaporated. As we have seen above, water crystals can expand and store up to 300 to 400 times their weight in water.
These crystals then slowly release the water for the roots to absorb them. The polymer used in water crystals avoids evaporation but ensures easy interaction between the roots and crystals.
Reduction in Watering Frequency
Water crystals are being used as a solution for drought-like conditions. There is no need to water plants with the same frequency as you did before using water crystals. Proper application of water-saving crystals can lead to 50 to 75% reduction in water frequency for potted plants. The number is around 15 to 40% for lawns. For lazy gardeners out there, this is a pleasant by-product of water crystals.
To know the right amount of dry or wet crystal to be used depending on the pot or hole you can browse through water crystal at Plant Doctor.
Absorbs Nutrients from Soil and Fertilisers
Be it natural nutrients or the effect for fertilisers, water crystals can absorb and store dissolved nutrients in the soil. These nutrients that would have otherwise been lost to leeching now are stored and get released in the soil along with water.
This process repeats itself with every cycle of water and fertiliser, ensuring optimal plant growth throughout the year.
Improved Soil Condition
Water crystals expand and shrink with each watering cycle. This continuous set of action loosens the soil around the crystals, forming minute spaces in the nooks and crannies of the pot or garden. It increases the infiltration rates amongst heavy soils like clay.
This allows for easy circulation of air and water, helping revive the earth of its depleted resources. It also improves the soil’s water retention capacity, in some cases up to 600%, making it a water-efficient strategy.
Sustainable gardening practices are the need of the day. With water crystals, you can adopt an effective water management system, and as mentioned above, can also improve the ecosystem in which your plants reside. You save on time, money, effort, and cost. You can look for water crystal at Plant Doctor or browse for other options depending on your home gardening requirement. Thanks to plantdoctor.com.au for consulting on this post.