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Making a Self Watering Pot

Category House Plants
This self watering pot is perfect for small pots or to use when you are away on vacation or business. This is a page about making a self watering pot.


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Smaller potted house plants need more attention especially during the summer or 'plant sitting' if you go away on vacation. Also, both under and over watering can become a problem.

There are now self watering larger outside pots that utilize this same wicking principle as this mini houseplant version I created.

Total Time: 5 minutes


  • cute larger can with a nice color graphic (my recycling bin is my craft shop!)
  • smaller can that can fit within the larger can
  • a milk or other bottle cap to separate the larger from the smaller can
  • yarn or macrame cord
  • scissors
  • potted plant
  • water


  1. Cut, then separate your macrame cord length and thread through holes in your plant's pot.
  2. Place second largest can into the largest pot (or can) open side facing down. Place small cap on top of that can inside the largest can.
  3. Add water to the can. The can inside will float a bit, that's OK. Your plant will hold it down eventually.
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  5. Now drop in your potted plant with the wicking macrame cord or yarn hanging down (into the water ultimately).
  6. I lightly top watered my plant to get it started, but the water reservoir below and the macrame cord wicking will draw the water up into the soil of the plant for much longer without my interference! The point is to keep the pot with the plant "out" of the water in the bottom since plants need air too. That's the reason for the small cap on top of the bottom can.
  7. The wick does the drinking for the plant!
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Comment Pin it! Was this helpful? 10


May 21, 20151 found this helpful

This is good. Thumbs up!

Reply Was this helpful? 1
May 9, 20160 found this helpful

I love it.....well done!

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
May 9, 20160 found this helpful

Donna, having read about something similar in the past, I too thought this was a good plan for the many houseplants I have. I experimented with different yards/ropes for creating wicks.

Problem was, after a little while, they all became slimy & stopped wicking. Have you experienced any problems like this?


Reply Was this helpful? Yes
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