The lone voice of horticultural reason

Handy Moisture Indicator Gizmo

Thirsty Light™

What a great little gadget, and perfect stocking stuffer for that garden goon in your life. The Thirsty Light Digital™ moisture sensor continuously monitors the moisture level of a potted plant. Featuring drypoint digital circuit technology, you simply slip the small, slender gizmo into the soil of a potted houseplant, and when it starts to blink, you know the plant is getting dry.

Except I hate houseplants, of course, and don’t grow them. My problem with houseplants is they’re needy. So when I asked the manufacturer why a fellow couldn’t use it outside in the garden, as a quickly-check-this-bed, quickly-check-that-bed moisture indicator, they replied of course, botanical gardens, landscapers, and gardeners slip one into the back pocket and use it anytime they want an accurate read on soil moisture around this or that plant.

So I got one and I love it. I used to own an antiquated implement with long double prongs and an arrow gauge that was some form of moisture indicator, except it wasn’t very accurate. The Thirsty Light checks soil moisture once per second, discerns five moisture levels, and then blinks to tell you what it’s found. No blink means ample moisture is detected. A slow blink tells you the soil holds adequate moisture. Medium blink tells you the soil is dry, a fast blink means very dry, and the dreaded double blink with pause means that while you were on vacation, not only didn’t it rain, the teenage kid you hired to water your garden blew the money you gave him on pot.

The product is manufactured by Trident Design, Columbus Ohio, and from the products found on the parent website, they make a variety of highly technical tools. To find out more about Thirsty Light, and to buy direct, go to

Don Engebretson
The Renegade Gardener