How to Manage Pests

Pests in Gardens and Landscapes

Poor water management, poor drainage

Inappropriate watering commonly damages landscape plants. Inadequate water causes foliage to wilt, discolor, and drop. Prolonged moisture and poor drainage results in smaller leaves, dieback or limb drop, and susceptibility to root rots, mineral deficiencies or toxicities, wood-boring insects and other pests that eventually can kill plants. Excessive moisture smothers and kills roots. As roots die, discolored and dying foliage appears in the aboveground portion of the plant.

Solutions

Maintain adequate but not excessive water in the soil to ensure plant survival and good growth. Examine plants regularly for symptoms of water stress. Monitor soil moisture around the plant's root zone and adjust irrigation according to seasonal need. Soil around young plants during hot weather may need to be monitored daily; every few weeks may be adequate when monitoring around mature trees during more favorable weather.

Do not water established trees and shrubs near the trunk; this promotes root and crown disease. Water plants when needed around the drip line and beyond. Adjust sprinklers or install deflectors to prevent wetting of trunks. Move drip emitters away from the base of the trunk after plants are established.

 

 

Branch dieback caused by lack of water
Branch dieback caused by lack of water

Do not overwater
Do not overwater

 

 


Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
All contents copyright © 2014 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

For noncommercial purposes only, any Web site may link directly to this page. FOR ALL OTHER USES or more information, read Legal Notices. Unfortunately, we cannot provide individual solutions to specific pest problems. See our Home page, or in the U.S., contact your local Cooperative Extension office for assistance.

Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California

Accessibility   /PMG/GARDEN/ENVIRON/poorwater.html revised: January 8, 2014. Contact webmaster.