When the sun came out for the first time the other day I was reminded of the two questions most often asked of me. When should I water and when should I fertilize. These questions cannot be answered with a simple once per week, every 5 days or any other timely pattern. Determining when depends on the weather. During the winter months watering and fertilizing is done less often than during the summer months. While this seems obvious, people do get into bad habits.
The simple solution to this big mystery is to watch the weather. When the sun is shining, it would be a good time to water. If the predictions are for several days of sunshine, it would be a good time to fertilize. Remember that plants make use of fertilizers through the process of photosynthesis which means that if the sun is not shining, the food from the fertilizers just stockpiles and this is a bad thing.
Let’s go over just a few rules of thumb. It is always better to allow your plants to run more on the dry side during the dark days of winter and a little air circulation can be a good thing. Remove the decorative foil as too much humidity can develop and fungi will follow. If you are having a wetness problem, try running an oscillating fan in the same room on low at all times. Avoid extreme cold and warm drafts.
During the summer months when the days are mostly sunny and warm, and the day length is long, you may need to water every 3 or 4 days and fertilize often. Moving your plants to the outside where they can receive fresh air is very beneficial as long as the night-time temperatures stay above 50.