This is a great tip for lightweight hanging pots for indoor plants! Pots can get really heavy when using pebbles or stones for drainage, which can be very taxing on the hooks hanging from your ceiling. Next time, try this instead: Use old bath-scrubbies in place of rocks! New ones are inexpensive, or you can recycle old ones you already have. (Just be sure to thoroughly rinse in hot water for a few minutes to remove any soap residue).
It only takes a second to poke around in the scrubber and find the thread that ties it all together- snip this and you'll end up with yards and yards of excellent, lightweight drainage material for the bottom of your pots.
Depending on the size of your pots, you can choose to use the scrubber whole or cut up lengths of the material from just one. (Mine yielded about 9 yds).
I also use a piece of weed-blocking cloth on top of the scrubbie material to help keep soil loss to minimum. I hope you found this tip to be helpful. Happy potting!
I wasn't sure I was going to like this tip, and then I read on, and saw where you put landscape fabric over the scrubby things. Now, I think it's an excellent idea!
I always put a coffee filter in bottom over hole to stop soil from getting out. Works great!
Wow, that's an EXCELLENT idea, thanks!
I have large and small planters, they can be heavy and costly to fill with soil. This is a more cost saving and eco friendly idea. With recycled bottles in my planters and pots, it allows me to use less soil, and provides better drainage for my seasonal plantings.
I grow many plants in containers, from small pots to 5 gallon buckets, and large recycle bins. A lot of these containers will get a layer of Styro chips before any soil or other medium is added.
Those lightweight plastic cups that flowers are sold in - I recycle them by using them for drainage when I transplant the flowers into terra cotta pots.
My German daughter-in-law showed me a neat trick for planting in pots. She put a coffee filter in the bottom of the pot then we went around the yard picking up little twigs and leaves.
Before planting your hanging baskets, window boxes, or tomato plants go and buy cheap pack of diapers, open one up, and place in the bottom of the container.
If you have a pecan tree, or if you buy pecans in the shell during the holidays, you can put those shells to good use.
Ideas for fillers for the base of flower pots from the ThriftyFun community. I have used a small pot upside down in some of my bigger planters. I put a smaller pot upside down in the bottom before I fill mine with dirt.
For indoor gardening, it can be a nuisance to find some pebbles to place over the drainage holes of a plant pot. Use a coffee filter instead.
I came up with a no cost idea for lightweight fill to use in the bottom of over sized pots or planters. I have used broken terra cotta pots and packing peanuts in the past. Problem was the terra cotta was heavy and I did not usually have packing peanuts.
This year I simply used a plastic gallon size pot that one of the plants came in and turned it upside down over the drainage hole in the bottom of the large pot. Then I needed more filler that would let water through, so I raided my recycling bin. I used plastic soda bottles and cans to fill in up to where I wanted to start the layer of planting soil. To even off the pile of bottles and cans, I took the empty plastic flat the flowers came in and turned it upside down over the bottles and cans. Then I was able to add the soil without it falling between all the gaps left by the bottles and cans. The end result was the right amount of dirt for my plants, plenty of drainage and minimal weight from the fill.
Source: My own idea.
By cosmicmoret from Dallas TX
I was thinking of smaller plants and using plastic bottle caps in the bottom. Actually I have been trying to find a use for the plastic caps. (04/20/2009)
Using (new) disposable diapers in bottom of flower pots will help hold in dirt and moisture. Cut to fit into pot leaving some coming up the sides. Place dirt on top and place in the plant of your choice.
Even the disposable training pants work great. These I have left complete, but placed a coffee filter in bottom of pot first, then the training pants and added dirt and put a plant in. The training pants sides will keep moisture up in the sides of the flower pot, which is really good for clay pots!
This is great for those diapers or training pants that are left over when your baby outgrows them and you can't find anyone to give them to.
I read about this on a gardening site. The guy suggested opening up the diaper and using the inside instead of water holding granules, which are pretty expensive. The article was a little incomplete as to how to use the diaper, but now I have a better idea. Thanks! (05/20/2005)