Soil thermometers are instruments that are designed to measure the temperature of the soil. For farmers and home gardeners, it’s important to make sure the soil is the right temperature before planting seeds or seedlings. Counting the number of days after the last frost or selecting a date on the calendar are not sufficient ways to insure the soil is ready for planting.

Outdoor soil thermometers come with a probe that is inserted into the ground. Some come with a permacolor bulb that allows you to read the temperature once you pull it out of the soil.  These thermometers are known as traditional outdoor soil thermometers.  Other outdoor thermometers have a display on top that allows you to instantly read the temperature while the probe is still in the ground. Whether you’re planning to grow plants that germinate in cool soil temperatures or plants that germinate in warmer soil temperatures, outdoor thermometers take the guess work out of determining the best time to plant.

Soil moisture meters measure the moisture in the soil. Knowing the amount of moisture in the soil can keep farmers and gardeners from over-watering or under-watering their plants. Too much or too little water can mean the death of many plants, so it stands to reason that having a good soil moisture meter on hand is a wise, low-cost investment.

In addition to farmers and gardeners, soil thermometers and meters are used by scientists who study the soil and scientists who study the climate, and are also used by researchers in the agriculture industry. These instruments are also useful to those who study different wildlife environments because they are small and portable, accurate, and simple to use.

Made by General Tools, the GLMM200 is a soil moisture meter that is easy to use and does not require batteries. It comes with a heavy duty probe and includes a watering chart for plants. Once the probe is inserted into the ground, it instantly indicates whether or not your plants need to be watered.

Jackson Kern