Are you a plant lover who often misses out on watering the house plants due to tight schedules or frequent traveling? If so, you no longer need to worry about constant watering because we have the perfect solution — self-watering planters. These containers have a water reservoir that provides water to the plants automatically. The water storage area ensures your plants have enough moisture to help them thrive while you focus on other aspects of your life. All you need to do is fill it with the required amount of water, and you are good to go. Some of these plant pots come with an indicator that makes it easy for you to know when to refill. However, choosing the top self-watering planters in 2023 can be a time-consuming task because of the numerous products available on the market. Therefore, we have compiled a list of the best self-watering planters in this article to make your decision-making process easier.
If you are shopping for self-watering planters but are spoilt for choice, we are here to help. Here are all the details you need to know before buying a top-of-the-line self-watering planter available on the market.
How Do Self-Watering Planters Work?
Self-watering planters have two primary methods that rely on capillary action to enable water movement in the reservoir to the pot. The first way uses a wick positioned inside the container with both ends placed in opposite directions. One end of the wick goes into the self-watering pot while the other remains in the reservoir. The wick, made of either a string or capillary mat, sucks water from the tank and facilitates its movement to the container. In the second method, the potting mix is designed to sit inside the source of water. Water moves from the bottom of the container to the rest of the sides through capillary. This design is standard, unlike the first.
Jaleesa from Green Mable further explains how these neat plant pots work in this video:
What Are the Benefits of Self-Watering Planters?
If you are wondering why you should buy a self-watering planter instead of a conventional planter, here are some benefits that will help you make an informed choice.
Efficient use of water
Since water is stored in an enclosed tank in a self-watering planter, the rate of evaporation is significantly low. Unlike using a watering can that sprays water on the plant’s surface and causes unnecessary waste, these planters ensure the plant utilizes water effectively by absorbing only what is needed through the roots. Therefore, if you are looking for a method that will help you save water while providing your plants with the needed water level, a self-watering planter will be suitable.
Consistent moisture levels
Your plants will enjoy consistent moisture levels without you having to tire watering them on a daily basis. Even when the weather is hot, plants will have a sufficient water supply and blossom without too much effort. These plant pots are ideal for plants that need constant watering to thrive. Conversely, succulents and plants like cactus do not do well in self-watering containers.
Prevention of plant diseases
Keep away fungal diseases from your plants by using these plant pots. Since water does not splash on the leaves, you will have healthy plants all year round.
What Factors to Consider When Shopping for a Self-Watering Planter?
There are factors you should look for when purchasing one of the best self-watering planters that will help your plants stay healthy while you are away. Some of them include:
The number of plants a container can hold is necessary because it will help you determine the appropriate size for your plants. Some pots are small and can only have a few plants, while others are large enough to hold multiple plants effortlessly. Therefore, go for a highly-rated self-watering planter that will ensure the plants are well spaced. If you have a lot of plants, you can even consider a self-watering planter box.
Type of material
Manufacturers use different materials like premium quality BPA-free plastic and polypropylene to construct planters. The plastic material comes in various forms like lacquered and polished finishes that make it eye-catching. As for polypropylene, it is hard to break, which makes it a worthy investment.
Also, some models come with blends that are either used in place of soil or mixed with soil when planting. For instance, LECHUZA-PON is a substrate that acts as a natural storage for nutrients because it absorbs excess fertilizer and releases it back to the plant. This way, your plants get the right conditions to thrive by avoiding root damage from overfertilizing. On the other hand, coconut coir is obtained from coconut fiber and is characterized by proper aeration, excellent water holding capacity, and suitable pH, which are essential for healthy plant growth.
The refilling of self-watering planters varies depending on the size of the reservoir. While some self-watering pots require you to refill after two weeks, some can go up to four weeks without needing a refill. Most of the planters come with a water indicator that shows the level of water. This way, you will easily notice when the water level in your self-watering planter is low.
Size of pot
Different models come in varying sizes to suit all plant sizes. Remember, you should buy a pot that is just the right size to allow root growth to enable the healthy growth of your plants. Choosing a self-watering planter that is too big or too small causes growth stunting due to unfavorable conditions. Also, consider the appropriate depth to allow the plant to balance during all seasons.
Oxygen is an essential component that plant roots need to have for healthy growth. When roots get soaked with water on a regular basis, they drown, suffocate, and ultimately rot. You should choose a pot that prevents drowning of the roots by providing a divider between the roots and the water reservoir. So, the roots get the right amount of water as well as oxygen for healthy growth.
How Do I Set Up a Self Watering Planter?
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to set up the self-watering pot:
Step 1: Follow the instruction manual to separate the inner container from the outer one.
Step 2: Place the moist mix at the bottom of the planting pot to facilitate the movement of moisture. If the pot you are using has a wick, ensure that one end is placed on the mix and the other on the reservoir.
Step 3: This is where the plants go in the potting mix. Plant your lovely plants in the self-watering planter and ensure they are well supported by the mix.
Step 4: Water plants using a can to sprinkle water on the surface of the container. This helps to remove all the air pockets present and settle the roots in the potting mixture. You will only need to use this watering method once. After that, the reservoir will come in handy.
Step 5: Let the water go down to the reservoir. Fill the reservoir appropriately.
Step 6: Monitor the water levels and refill as needed. However, it would be best if you did not let the tank dry out. If it does, moisten the mix before adding water to the reservoir to make it work effectively.
Comparing the Leading Self-Watering Planters of 2023 in Detail
If you are a gardener looking for a unique planter that will keep your plants moist while you are busy, this is the ultimate product. Made from lacquer plastic, it is the perfect addition to make your outdoor garden more stylish. The self-watering system comes with a clear view window for water control so you can see when it needs a refill. Also, the container comes with an inner pot and an external pot. The inner pot has holes to allow proper circulation of oxygen and keeps the roots moist for fast growth. As for the outer pot, it has a water reservoir that is used to introduce moisture to the plants’ roots. Thus, your plants will have an adequate amount of water and stay alive for around 4 weeks after filling the pot.
Comes in a unique and attractive design that enhances your outdoor décor
Unlike other containers that do not offer proper aeration, this self-watering planter has a two-point nesting design that lifts the potted plants out of the water to prevent over-watering. It uses hydroponic technology to regulate the amount of water while providing the necessary nutrients to your plants. It comes with a pellet of natural coco soil made of organic coconut fibers, making it an environment-friendly option. If you are a busy plant parent, you will love that this planter needs to be refilled after two weeks.
Comes with 100% organic soil that you combine with regular soil for pH regulation
Includes a water level indicator that shows the level of water in the reservoir to help you know when to refill, and a measuring valve to help you track plant growth.
Inner plant holder has legs that lift the plant out of the water to prevent overwatering
Are you a plant parent who needs to take care of multiple plants despite being on a tight schedule? Well, this set of six self-watering planters will be ideal because they can easily store excess water to keep your plants happy and healthy for a week by giving them an adequate amount of moisture. They have drainage holes that prevent root rot by enabling the roots to breathe. In addition, they come in a beautiful shape that will be suitable for office or home decoration. Nonetheless, these planters are made of high-quality BPA-free plastic material with a polished finish, making them safe for your plants. Since they are lightweight, you can hang them to brighten up your spaces.
Features a double-layer design that keeps insects away
Polished finish makes them eye-catching, which is perfect for your indoor décor
If you are shopping for a stylish yet straightforward self-watering planter for your tabletop, this is the best option. The elongated plant pot comes with a water level indicator to make it easy for you to observe water levels and refill them appropriately. It also features an inlet for easy injecting of water into the outer basin.
You will get value for your money because this pot is made from high-quality plastic material with a lacquered finish that is guaranteed to serve you for a long time. In addition, it comes with coco coir soil made from plant fiber and 0.5 quart of water. However, coco coir soil contains little nutrients, which calls for addition of fertilizer to expand it for best long lasting results. It is advisable to use fertilizer at the right time to ensure your plants get all the nutrients they require.
Features drainage holes to prevent root rot
Elongated design is suitable for tabletops, balconies, window sill, or shelves
Comes with a water indicator for monitoring water levels
The inside section facilitates the breeding of fungus
Take the guesswork out of plant care by getting this matte self-watering planter that can be used in multiple ways to bring your patio or balcony to life. Whether you use brackets to hang it on the balcony rails or place it on the floor, it will improve the aesthetics effortlessly. This pot makes planting simple as it comes with a liner that is easy to lift.
In addition, this is one of the top self-watering planters that come with a plant substrate, LECHUZA–PON. It is used as a soil alternative that has an ideal pH for healthy growth and facilitates capillary action to ensure your plants get the necessary amount of water.
Features a drainage plug to facilitate drainage of excess rainwater when used outdoors
Versatile as it can be used on decks, hung on railings or placed on the floor
Comes with a water-level indicator to help you know when it’s time to refill
Does not include hanging brackets
People Also Asked
Q: Do self-watering planters need drainage holes?
A: Drainage holes are essential to facilitate the proper flow of water to prevent root rot. Water flows into the bottom lid in case of heavy rains or overwatering. If the pot does not have holes, you can drill two just above the reservoir.
Q: Can self-watering planters be used indoors?
A: Yes, they are used for small indoor plants like perennials, tropical plants, and vegetables. But, these planters are not suitable for houseplants that thrive in moist soil because it is hard to regulate and maintain appropriate soil moisture.
Q: How often do you fill self-watering pots?
A: The frequency of refilling will be determined by factors like levels of sunlight, season, and type of plant. However, every three weeks will be ideal. You can raise the humidity around the leaves by watering the top lightly.
Q: Do self-watering plants attract mosquitoes?
A: Self-watering planters provide a conducive environment for mosquitoes to breed, which can be problematic if you have them indoors. You can prevent them from breeding by adding oil into the water. Alternatively, you can use a mosquito dunk.
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