Moist Soil – How to Determine if Soil is ‘Moist Enough’

Q: I can’t find a definition for what moist soil is. When I see a plant description that says it requires moist soil, what exactly does that mean?

A: “Moist soil” is as undefinable as “It’s too cold in this house!”

For some plants, like Japanese iris, sweetspire and river birch, “moist soil” means that they thrive in soil that’s just short of soggy. For others, “moist soil” just means the soil shouldn’t be allowed to completely dry out between waterings. I think the latter description is what most plant labels refer to. A plant that prefers wetter soil will be described as “tolerates wet feet”or “good for moist areas”. Give your plants soil that doesn’t dry completely, keeping an eye out for wilting leaves on them, and they should be fine.

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