Summer Water and Native Plants

Water is often the culprit when California native plants die young. Adapted to wet winters and dry summers, these plants succumb to fungal diseases and rots when watered too much in hot weather. Yet newly planted and established natives benefit from some supplemental moisture in summer. Short duration and/or overhead watering – often typical garden irrigation - are the worst. Instead opt for longer drinks from drip systems or soaker hoses. (Move drip emitters away from the base of plants when they are established to avoid crown rot). Established plants often get by on monthly soaks, while newly planted natives may need weekly or twice monthly watering during their first two years in the garden. Water recommendations for specific plants are on the web site of Tree of Life Nursery, native plant growers, at


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