The One Product That Made Me a Better Plant Parent

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moisture meter

The Spruce / Illustration by Amy Sheehan / Photo by Taylor Fuller

As I was walking around my house watering (what feels like) millions of plants the other day, I realized I’ve been a plant mom for over two years now. Time flies when you’re caring for a bajillion plants, right? And while my collection has dwindled slightly (I blame the full-time job I now hold), I still love caring for my plants. There’s something so therapeutic about it.

But, I’ll admit, occasionally I’m in such a rush to water my plants that I forget when the last time I watered them was. And then I end up overwatering them, and another plant heads off to my plant graveyard (i.e., the trash can). However, most of the time I reach for my moisture meter.  This tiny little green thing has saved a lot of my plants' lives.

Surenshy 3-in-1 Moisture, Light and Soil pH Meter

moisture meter


When you have as many plants as I have (more than 60) you need to make sure you’re caring for them correctly. Each type of plant will have a different frequency at which you water them. Some plants may need to be watered every three days while others may only need a dousing every two weeks. When you have a lot of plants it’s easy to forget which is which and what care routine is needed.

So, what do I do? I use my moisture meter, the popular three-in-one model. When the Planta app (an app that helps keep track of plant care) sends me a notification to water my plants, I walk around my house sticking my moisture meter into the soil of my plants that are due for watering. If the meter reads moist or wet, I usually will wait to water that plant. If it says dry, I know that plant needs a drink. 

You could always use your finger, but I find that the moisture meter is more accurate. It reads other things too, like light and soil pH, but honestly I only use it to tell me how wet the soil is.

It really saves my plants' lives in helping me know when exactly to water. My London apartment is drafty and each room is a different temperature and humidity, which means that some plants dry out more quickly than others. So even if I was a perfect plant parent and had a watering schedule that I followed to the letter, it wouldn’t necessarily mean that my plants would be thriving. 

Following a watering schedule would mean that the plants in my kitchen would literally be drowning, because in the winter it’s absolutely freezing and it takes a really long time for the soil to dry out. In the summer it’s too hot, so I need to water more frequently. My bedroom door is closed most of the time so my dog doesn’t jump on my bed which means that it’s a lot warmer in there, so my peace lily dries out a lot faster than the peace lily that I keep in my living room...

The moisture meter saves me the trouble and guesswork of trying to figure out when my plant needs to be watered. Plus, it keeps the plants out of the trash can.