It snowed last Tuesday. As is often the case, the amounts received in the panhandle varied widely. In my house it was winter and there was enough to cover the short cut grass. Parts of my sidewalk and driveway were never covered in snow. After the storm passed and the skies cleared, he had 0.23 inches of water on the rain gauge. It’s nice, but has little impact on your needs.
As most of you know, we haven’t had a fair amount of humidity in a few months. The extreme cold just before Christmas can easily damage or kill plants that are not well hydrated.
The shallower the roots of the plant, the more susceptible it is to the cold. Therefore, deep roots require proper watering. In general, perennials have the shallowest roots, while shrubs have somewhat deeper roots. Trees generally have the deepest roots. But not all plants are the same and many have unique needs.
Proper watering practices are the same regardless of the season. Deep, infrequent watering is best for almost all plants. This will encourage the roots to grow deeper into the water. Frequent watering will keep the ground near the surface wet and will have no incentive for roots to grow deeper.
A good way to achieve deep watering is to water once, soak and then water again. For example, he determined that two 20-minute watering sessions were required to get about 10-12 inches of water infiltration into the lawn and yard. The only trick to this is winter. Our soil generally does not freeze and remains frozen for several days even in winter. During prolonged cold spells, the soil can freeze for several days, but thaws quickly when the weather returns to normal. So just make sure the soil is not frozen before deep watering in winter.
The double watering technique works well for almost all watering, in all seasons, including container watering. Let If it needs to be watered, rain is definitely expected, and it’s time to water, then I might water it once, hoping that the rain will get the job done.
A few years ago I lost some mature boxwoods and suffered some more severe damage due to the rapid and dramatic drop to abnormally low temperatures when the plants were not well hydrated. It has resulted in some expense, but more importantly the replacement and waiting years for the damaged plants to reach maturity.
Having said all of this, remember that more is not always better. Too much water will deprive plant roots of oxygen. Oxygen is just as necessary as water, and lack of it can even kill plants. Wait until the ground is dry and water again.