Test Your Knowledge
Wilting is a sign that the leaves aren’t getting enough moisture, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the soil is dry. Anything that damages plant roots can cause wilting. Plant roots need a fairly constant supply of both air and water. Too little water and the roots die from lack of moisture. Too much water and the spaces between soil particles remain filled with water, suffocating roots. Both situations reduce a plant’s ability to deliver enough water to stems and leaves, resulting in wilting. Root diseases, physical damage (such as disturbing roots while you’re hoeing) and soil-borne insects can also harm roots to the point that they can’t fully hydrate the plant. Damage to stems can also cause wilting. Some diseases and insects (especially borers) prevent water distribution throughout the plant, causing some or all of it to wilt. The only way to tell if lack of water is causing wilting is to check the soil moisture..