Plants Who Like Wet Feet

Tuesday, October 24, 2017 | Regina Downes | Comments (0)

Thanks to our unique tropical climate here in the Top End, we get to enjoy months of warm dry days in the dry season followed by the polar opposite in the wet season, with big storms and record breaking rainfall levels

If your garden soil is very clay, has uneven levels or just drains poorly you are probably struggling to grow plants in your garden, especially through our wet season. Most plants love lots of water (who wouldn’t in this sweat box we call home!) BUT that water needs to drain off pretty quickly in order for most plants to survive. If water sits too long around most plants root system, it causes the plants roots to rot and the plant dies. Some plants just don't like having wet feet, for prolonged periods.

Adding gypsum (clay breaker), building raised garden beds, making man-made ponds, planting grass swale's and changing your gardens ground levels can all help with drainage, when tackling wet areas of your garden that hold excess water.
If you have tried and tested the above methods and had no success and your still losing plants then it’s time to change tactics and look at other options, like planting plants that love having wet feet all or most of the time.
There are lots of different plants to choose from here in the Top End

10 of Our Most Popular Plants Who Love Wet Feet


1) Thysanolaena maxima (Tiger Grass) Looks great planted in clumps, as a screen for a boundary fenceline. Plant in full sun.

2) Neomarica gracilis (Walking Iris)
Mass plant in shade or full sun (Purple and white flowers)

3) Bambusa (Bamboo)
Thrives in wet areas (does drop some leaf litter) many varieties to choose from-From dwarf varieties to 15m giants. Great as a screening plant for privacy

4) Carex riparia (Sedge)
Ideal planted in clumps along dry river beds that also flood in the wet season. Silver/grey foliage.

5) Crinum sp.-Golden/Green/Black or Red (Clumping shrub)
Perfect plant to add a splash of color and or height to a wet area of your garden.

6) Thalia dealbata (Red stem Canna Lily)
Grow in a pot; in a pond or plant in a really wet area (roots do not like to dry out) The Red stem is a really nice feature of this plant.

7) Lomandra hystreix (mat rush)
Plant in swales; thrives in high humidity and in wet soils

8) Dietes bicolour (butterfly iris)
Beautiful plant mass planted, does not like to sit permanently in water logged soils. White/Yellow flower heads

9) Alocasia sp. (Elephant ears)
Plant in a large pot, in a pond or in a very wet area (shade or full sun)

10) Cyperus papyrus (Paper reed)
Plant in a pot in a pond or in a very wet area, does not like its roots to dry out


Signs that your Plant is suffering from too much Water;

  • The plants leaves start to turn yellow then brown and fall off
  • Plant looks wilted
  • Dig up and check out the plants root ball; look for the following signs -Root ball really wet, soggy and falling part easily
Feel free to share any comments you may have when gardening through our wet season and remember its easier to work with our climate then against it!



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