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How to Choose Plants That Need More Water

By Melissa Lewis ; Updated September 21, 2017

Some plants are drought-resistant and need little water to thrive. In the other extreme, some plants need lots of water to thrive and will wilt or possibly die without nearly a boat load of water--all the time. Fortunately, if you live in a wet environment, have low-lying land areas, have clay soil that holds lots of moisture, live near a water source or have some kind of run-off, you can find ideal plants for your yard or garden. You just have to know which plants need more water.

Choose plants that are native to marshy environments, which may be the perfect choice if your planting site is near a stream, creek and other wet soil conditions such as under the drip line of an air conditioner unit. Marshy plants include blue-eyed grass, yerba mansa, marsh marigold, ragged robin, California aster and yellow groove bamboo.

Choose plants that prefer or tolerate wet clay soil conditions or like “wet feet.” They include such plants as hostas, primroses, rose mallow hibiscuses, dwarf vincas, creeping mint and lady ferns. If you prefer bulbous plants, blue Danube, cannas, elephant ears and some irises--water, Japanese, yellow flag and blue flag varieties--grow quite well with wet feet.

Choose plants that are native to your area. Plants that grow naturally in your area can usually tolerate less-than-ideal soil conditions. Observe the wild flowers along roadsides or in the woods -- they may just be ideal plants for your wet soil. Then go to your local nursery and ask whether the plants can tolerate more water than the average plants before buying them.



  • Ask the staff at a local nursery. They should know which plants need more water than the average plant. If you describe your soil conditions, they will be able to point you in the right direction.

About the Author


Melissa Lewis is a former elementary classroom teacher and media specialist. She has also written for various online publications. Lewis holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.