Hand water new plants until they are established.
Ken carries out some hand watering to newly planted plants on one of our projects. Even with automatic irrigation systems in place, new plants require some supplemental water until they have established, especially in very hot weather. This year has not been so hot so we have been given a break. But even with cooler weather new plantings need a direct watering into each plants root ball about every second day for about the first 3-4 weeks. Drip irrigation helps to target the center of the plants but it is not fool proof! I suggest that extra is better than not and don't rely on the rain as on average 1/2 inch of rain waters about 4 inches deep so even a small plants roots can be 10 inches deep at planting time. So you may be surprised to hear that all the rain that occurred this week added up to about a half an inch so if it all happened at once on one day it would only half water a newly planted shrub for the one day and it could be drying out underground. Once a plant is established after about 6 weeks it can then begin to find its own water. So keep on watering! Happy Gardening!