Nurturing Nature: The Secrets To Plant Preservation During Harmattan
By Rashidat Oladele
Plant preservation is all about taking care of our greens and ensuring their health and well-being. It involves various practices and techniques to protect plants from harm, promote their growth, and maintain their vitality.
Whether you have indoor plants, a garden, or even a small balcony with potted plants, plant preservation is important to keep them thriving and looking beautiful.
Harmattan can be tough on plants, but with a little extra care, we can keep them thriving. Here are a few things to help preserve plant health
Watering: During harmattan, the dry winds can cause plants to lose moisture quickly. Make sure to water your plants regularly, especially in the early morning or late afternoon when it’s cooler. Avoid overwatering, as it can lead to root rot.
Mulching: Applying a layer of organic mulch around the base of your plants can help retain moisture and protect them from the drying effects of harmattan winds. Mulch also helps to regulate soil temperature.
Pruning: Trim any dead or damaged branches from your plants to promote healthy growth. This will also prevent diseases from spreading and improve air circulation around the plant.
Protecting from wind: Create windbreaks around your plants using materials like mesh or cloth to shield them from strong harmattan winds. This will prevent dehydration and damage to leaves and stems.
Fertilizing: Provide your plants with the necessary nutrients by using a balanced fertilizer. This will help strengthen their immune system and make them more resistant to harmattan-related stress.
Indoor plants: If you have delicate plants, consider bringing them indoors during the harmattan season. This will protect them from the harsh winds and dry air.
Humidity: The dry air during harmattan can cause plants to lose moisture rapidly. Increase humidity around your plants by placing a tray of water near them or using a humidifier. Misting the leaves with water can also provide some relief.
Shade: If possible, provide some shade for your plants during the hottest parts of the day. This can be achieved by using shade cloth, umbrellas, or even moving potted plants to a more sheltered spot.
Pest control: Harmattan can bring about an increase in pests like aphids and whiteflies. Regularly inspect your plants for signs of infestation and take appropriate measures to control them, such as using organic insecticides or introducing beneficial insects.
Avoid fertilizing during harmattan: It’s best to avoid fertilizing your plants during harmattan as it can stress them further. Wait until the harmattan season is over and the weather conditions improve before resuming fertilization.
Monitor soil moisture: Check the moisture level of the soil regularly. Harmattan winds can cause the soil to dry out faster, so adjust your watering schedule accordingly. Stick your finger about an inch into the soil – if it feels dry, it’s time to water.
Protect young and vulnerable plants: Young or delicate plants may require extra protection during harmattan. Consider using plant covers or creating temporary shelters to shield them from the harsh winds and cold temperatures.
Also it’s good to observe your plants closely and adapting your care routine to their specific needs is key to their well-being. By following these tips, you’ll be able to keep your plants healthy and thriving throughout the harmattan season.