The takeaway message is to monitor the soil at the rootzone to ensure proper moisture levels. This can be done by pushing a probe into the soil. A wooden dowel, rebar or even a screwdriver can work for this task. Try to insert the probe at least 8 to 12 inches. Dry soil will be very difficult to penetrate indicating water should be applied.
Add water slowly to the rootzone using a sprinkler, soaker hose, drip irrigation or other method. The amount of water necessary will vary depending on plant size, but use the soil probe as your indicator. When the probe can reach 12-inches into the soil, the moisture level should be adequate.
Monitor fruit crops weekly during hot, dry weather. Newly planted fruit crops and strawberries, with shallow root systems, will need to be checked at least twice a week for soil moisture. (Cynthia Domenghini)