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Thread: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

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    420 Member Medical Marijuana's Avatar
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    How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    Leaves that are drooping from underwatering will look limp and lifeless.

    Leaves that are drooping from overwatering will be firm and curled down, even from the stem of the leaf.

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    On Vacation 3lions's Avatar
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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    Mine seemed to be the second one followed now by the first one :-/

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    420 Member Malcolm's Avatar
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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    Rather than depend on waiting for the appearance of the foliage to indicate whether or not your plants are in need of H2O, why not just use the medium to be your guide. Soak it completely through and then every couple of days or so, stick your finger in the medium up to the knuckle. The average human knuckle is about two inches long, seriously. I can just see all the heads checking this thread out sitting there measuring their knuckles right now, lol. Anyway, two inches is a good depth to determine if your medium needs water or not. If the top two inches is dry, water. If damp or moist, chill and check it again the next day and so forth. Plants take time to recover from any stressfull situation and both growth and flower development will suffer as a result. Hope this helps...

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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    Thanks man..

    Yeahh kinda know of the finger trick (altho we do have 2 knuckles on the finger lol) it may sound daft but not sure if it feels wet or damp or dry, maybe I just have a lack of feeling in the fingers lol.

    Is there not a tool that measures moisture like that?

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    420 Member Malcolm's Avatar
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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    Quote Originally Posted by 3lions View Post
    Thanks man..

    Yeahh kinda know of the finger trick (altho we do have 2 knuckles on the finger lol) it may sound daft but not sure if it feels wet or damp or dry, maybe I just have a lack of feeling in the fingers lol.

    Is there not a tool that measures moisture like that?
    The second knuckle is for playing around in a different kind of "soil", lol. Eventually you will get a feel for when they are in need but until then, there is a "Moisture Meter" you can purchase for under twenty bucks that will tell what the moisture level is either with a numbering or wording scale. They are easy to use and will help you establish a schedual that will help you know when to water or not. As the plants grow they will transpire more and more water through their foliage thus needing more water in the medium. Container size also factors in to the equation as well. A large plant in a small container will use more water than one in an appropriate size for the plant. Humidity also matters. Higher humidity means the plants will transpire less water, lower humidity, more water...

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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    I like to either get the pots with the bigger holes in the bottom or drill a one inch hole in the side by the bottom so I can stick a finger in to see what it feels like.

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    420 Member of the Month (Oct 10') TorturedSoul's Avatar
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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    Quote Originally Posted by 3lions View Post
    Thanks man..

    Yeahh kinda know of the finger trick (altho we do have 2 knuckles on the finger lol) it may sound daft but not sure if it feels wet or damp or dry, maybe I just have a lack of feeling in the fingers lol.

    Is there not a tool that measures moisture like that?
    Yeah, it's called a popsicle stick.

    Ask your wife and/or mother about testing doneness of baked goods with toothpicks - same principle.
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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    You can also tell by looking at the soil...if it's nice and crusty...ewww crusty...
    Last edited by Be Irie; 02-22-2010 at 08:35 AM. Reason: inappropriate language

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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    You cant look at the soil half way down the pot which is where it needs to be of the right moisture content really.

    "Ask your wife and/or mother about testing doneness of baked goods with toothpicks - same principle"

    pmsl, women don't bake nowadays Im sure, I think the best way has been judging by weight, weigh em dry, weigh em soaked blahh blahh lol

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    420 Member Malcolm's Avatar
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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    Quote Originally Posted by 3lions View Post
    You cant look at the soil half way down the pot which is where it needs to be of the right moisture content really.

    "Ask your wife and/or mother about testing doneness of baked goods with toothpicks - same principle"

    pmsl, women don't bake nowadays Im sure, I think the best way has been judging by weight, weigh em dry, weigh em soaked blahh blahh lol
    The moisture will "wick" up towards the top soil. Thats why when you set a container in standing water, the water will eventually wick it's way from the bottom up. If the top two inches or so of medium is moist then you should be ok. Lifting the container and feeling the heft works too. If your temp and humidity does not vary much within the grow space then getting into a "watering"groove so to speak, should not be to difficult. It's not rocket science...

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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    3lions, I am well aware or the cake and toothpick thing... I water every two days...one cup of water, but I am using 4 inch square pots..
    Last edited by 420 Girl; 02-23-2010 at 10:51 PM.

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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    Thanks for the input. I seem to be getting the hang of it, also I realise that it is fine to have wet and dry periods too so all is cool.


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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    Hey how do I know if I am under or over watering? I am new at this stuff... rooted clones are in 4" pots and I can see a few roots starting to emerge from the bottom. Currently I am giving each plant about 60ml every day but I am not sure if it is enough... Should I be soaking them once a week?

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    New Member DoobieBrother's Avatar
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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    This is being over-complicated: water every two or three days (at first, when plants are small - more often when the are larger..,.duh!). Do not rely on schedules, finger tests, just use your common sense. If the pot is very light and the soil looks bone dry, it's time to water. Do so until excess water drips out slowly from the pot holes - you may have to add several liters to saturate the soil before the excess stops quickly poring out. To clarify, when very dry, if your soil-mix has the proper consistency, the first few liters of water should drop right through the entire pot. You need to saturate the roots, but not drown them.

    If the plants are happy, the pot feels heavier than when bone dry, do not water.

    The biggest newbie problem is over-watering. If in doubt, DON'T!
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    New Member DoobieBrother's Avatar
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    Re: How can I tell whether my drooping plant is overwatered or underwatered?

    Quote Originally Posted by burningbeast View Post
    my seedling looks lifeless and it wont stand up help some one
    It may be just stretching for light. How close to the light source is it? You should be using fluoros for seedlings, which allows you to place them very close without fear of burning.

    Get some sort of support, a popsicle stick will work, just be careful not to damage any frail rooms. Tape it to the outside of your container, than delicately use a small piece of yarn to tie it up.

    Hope this helps.

    Oh, btw, I am new here, but not new to growing! Been doing this for over 20 years.....
    I thought I saw an eye doctor on an Alaskan island, but it turned out to be an optical Aleutian.

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