My bonsai watering regime and few myths
During last few days we enjoyed ideal bonsai weather in my area. At least, according to my taste. We had few showers, sometimes multiple times a day. We had some night rain also. During the day temperatures reached over 20°C, no cold nights. During the day shower changed onto sunny day. Ideal for the trees, right?
I recently visited garden of one of my good friends. He is doing bonsai also. And we were discussing watering regimes, among other topics. I told him that I'm watering my trees 2 times a day already now in May. Because we have quite windy weather too often now, and wind dries out my trees quickly. I prefer more wet environment for my trees than dry one. I personally do not believe, that for good root growth you need to let your substrate get dry. (Remember, I do not do conifers too much) So I explained to him that I'm using water from my well, with temperature which is constantly at around 16°C, almost throughout the whole year. I do spray this water all over my trees, on substrate, on the foliage, to do it quickly and effectively. And I do it in the morning, evening or during mid day. Actually, when ambient temperatures are above 30°C, I try to do it minimum 2 times a day and sometimes 3 times a day(at least during the weekends). And my garden has direct sunlight from 7:00 till 16:00 in summer.
And than came the question. If there are drops of the water on leaves of my trees, on direct sunlight, isn't it dangerous? Since it can burn the foliage, right? Since drops of water works like magnifying glass, or? I think this is very popular myth, which refuse to die.
In case it works like this, my garden would be burned already several times to ashes. After summer showers, or after my midday watering sessions. But what about foliage of trees in the woods after such summer storms and showers changed onto hot day again? Wouldn't they burn also? And what about tropical forests where this kind of weather is even more intense and temperatures even higher?
|Picture from yesterday, after rain. Drops works like magnifying glass and leaves will burn now?|
My experience is, it is no problem for the foliage. I do it for many years without any problem. No burned leaves. No fungus on leaves, even if I water trees over the foliage in the evening. No problem with cold water even if its temperature is 16°C and air temperature is +35°C.
Important note is – I keep all of my trees in inorganic substrates – mixtures of zeolite, Teramol and so on. Any watering regime is strictly related to your own environment, climate, substrates used and feeding regime. So it is quite complex system. But if you understand how it works, it is pretty easy to find out what works for you and what isn't.