Importance of Water to Plants

Overview

Every living thing requires water. Plants can use up to its entire body weight in water. If humans were to use the same amount of water, we would need to drink up to 20 gallons of fluid a day.

Water on a flower.

Droplets on a plant.

Function

Plants use water to dissolve minerals and nutrients from the soil surrounding the root system and carry it up through the stems and leaves.

Plants need water or will wilt.

Transpiration

Water is essential for transpiration, the exchange of water for carbon dioxide. Pores in the leaves of plants absorb carbon dioxide and allow water to evaporate out.

In need of energy.

Structure

Water fills the cells of plants providing firm support. This is why plants wilt when deprived of water and perk up after receiving water.

Delicate leaves.

Photosynthesis

Water is an important part of photosynthesis, the process plants use to convert the sun's energy into food. Water molecules combine with carbon to produce glucose, which the plant uses as food.

Roots need attention, too.

Expert Insight

Too much water can cause a plant's roots to rot. Gardeners should take care that plants have enough drainage to avoid overwatering.

References

  • Michigan State University
  • MadSci Network
  • Plant-Care.com
Keywords: water, plants, transpiration

About this Author

Denise Bertacchi is a freelance writer with a degree in journalism from Southeast Missouri State University. She is a St. Louis suburbanite who has written for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Boys' Life, Wisconsin Trails, and Missouri Life.