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Helpful tip from The Garden Geeks: Did you know that dish washing liquid can help you water your plants? Once the dirt gets hard and dry, it often resists getting wet again. Add a teaspoon of dish washing liquid per gallon of water to overcome its resistance. The soap will break the surface tension on the soil and force it to absorb water. An easy way to do this in a large area is to fill a hose end fertilizer applicator with soap and run the water through it as you sprinkle the lawn.