Self Watering Window Box – Self watering container is truly a life savior innovation for you who are lazy to take care of your plants. It has become a very popular trend lately as it is really convenient and effective. Moreover, it has proven to be inexpensive and easy to maintain.
Self watering window box is also known to be successful to help the soil has enough moisture they need with minimum effort. All you need to do is change the water or refill the water reservoir once the water run out. You can do it weekly, or even once every two weeks. In short, self watering container is saving the trouble of daily watering.
Above all, the best quality of self watering window box is perhaps that it can be easily made even by yourself. You can practically use glass bottle or just simply modify your old plastic pot into a self watering pot. Other option you can do is making a box under your window that can water themselves! However, it is important to know how this planter work so you can make it perfectly. Read on to find out how this planter magically do its thing!
How do Self Watering Window Boxes Work?
The magic works behind the self watering container is called capillary mechanism or so called Wicking. If you wonder what the weird thing that is, here is simple explanation to you. It is basically a phenomenon that happened when you dipped one end of paper towel in water and the water slowly creeps across the rest of paper towel. super simple, right? This is how plants draw water up from their roots to the top of their body.
In more complicated explanation, capillary is caused by intermolecular attraction in liquids. Attractive forces will form between liquid and solid material with tubes or small spaces within it. The said force between unlike molecules of liquid and solid material is called adhesion. However, the explanation is getting boring now, right? In short, the roots will magically absorb the water by themselves through this intricate process.
The water that is drawn up by this mechanism will replace the water released from the plant’s leaves. It will constantly be that way. The soil is being fed from the water reservoir by capillary action. All you need to do is making a wicking system to support the mechanism. You also need proper potting mixture so the soil remains moist but not wet.
How do You Make A Self Watering Container?
In order to make proper self watering container, you need a good design to support the capillary mechanism. Even though it sounds a bit difficult, you don’t need to fret! It is easy steps and don’t require much effort. Here are six key features to your self watering container :
The growing bed is the upper section to your self watering container. It will hold your plants and also your soil. It is important to plan the size of your container so you can choose what wicking material suits best for your plants.
This may be the most crucial part of making the container. It is absolutely a must to use an absorbent potting soil. It is so that the water can be absorbed easily by the roots. Moreover, the loose and lightweight soil can provide plenty of oxygen the plants need.
This is essential element to the self watering container you’re about to make. Water reservoir should have been located beneath the growing bed. It is quite relevant to have a way to monitor the water level to your water reservoir. For instance, you can make a glass window for that purpose. This will help you greatly to control the water inside the reservoir.
Another thing that is quite essential is a watering pipe. You need it to refill your reservoir. For your option, you can make a vertical pipe so that you can pour the water from above or an opening at the side. You may also need caps to protect your tubes from debris and pests. If you think that is not so practical, you can easily make an opening to the container to have direct access to the reservoir.
Now, this is the main point of the container. The wicking system is what delivers the water from the reservoir to your soil then later be transferred to your roots. In order to make this mechanism happens, you can use wicks made of absorbent material. For instance, a piece of rope or strips of cloth can do the trick. Other options you can use of are cotton, wool, or microfiber.
However, it is more effective to use a material that is not easily to rot. After that, you can put the wicking system so that one end in the water of your reservoir and the other is in the soil. Other alternative you can also do is making a wicking pot that puts the potting soil directly in contact with the water from your reservoir. Another thing you need to consider is to place enough wicks for your plants so that your plants receive right amount of water they need.
Drainage holes are important so excess water can drain and the roots aren’t flooded. It is best to have drainage holes on the side of your container so the water can escape easily. Other alternative you can do is having it on the bottom to completely drain your reservoir by the end of the season. Make sure to elevate your container using bricks so it gives enough space for the water to flow out.
Read also: 2019 Most Wanted Kitchen Garden Window Ideas
Do Self Watering Pots Really Work?
With all that being said, next question that pops up in your mind is probably the effectiveness. Gardeners would say that self watering container mostly works wonderfully. It is practical and super easy to maintain.
Best to Grow Veggies
Providing consistent level of moisture directly to the roots is what veggies would like. Using self watering containers to grow veggies is good to minimize common mistakes gardeners tend to do : over watering. Best veggies to grow using self watering containers are tomatoes, lettuce, and spinach.
Good for Indoor Plants
It is good to lessen the mess that is potentially created by watering such as leaking water and dirt. Not only that, most houseplants prefer evenly moist soil so self watering container is perfect choice. As your indoor plants don’t get affected by rain, you can also completely in control of keeping the water. Indoor plants that are best suited to self watering containers are fern, baby tears, and spike mosses.
Good for Herbs
Herbs love constant level of moisture to their roots. It keeps them healthy and gives best produce. Herbs you can plant are mint, parsley, and Chives.
Self Watering Window Boxes
Having self watering window boxes is practical so you can keep the effort maintaining them in minimum amount. All you need to take account for is the length of self watering window box. Bigger boxes need more wicking systems. However, it is still possible to do if you can keep at least 2 wicks for each plant in your boxes. Here are five self watering window planters you can inspire to :
Bush of Flowers
Flowers are always the prettiest when decorating the outdoor space of your home. Keeping a self watering box right under your window full of flower sure brings color to your house’s ambiance. You can choose a white box to bring out the colorfulness of your flowers. Moreover, you can choose a plastic containers for best practice so you can refill the water tank easily.
Another design idea you can think of is by matching the color between your window and your self container box. Paint them in brown color to bring out a natural feel to your brick wall. You can make your box using woods. However, refilling your window box self watering reservoir can be a little difficult. Thus, it is best to install a water pipe to your growing bed so you can refill the water smoothly.
Hanging Small Boxes
Small box is cute to decorate your window, especially if it is hung! Hang a black self watering box to your window for simplicity. Moreover, you can use a self watering box with an opening to the reservoir so it is less trouble to refill the water. Be careful of the leaking water, though!
Classic Brown Box
Keeping your self watering box natural is best. For instance, you can paint it dark brown to mimic the color of raw wood. This style will bring your modern home even more charming. As it is pretty big in size, you can install water pipe to your water reservoir. Finally, you can hide the pipe in between your flower bushes to keep it neat.
Pretty White with Bracket
Box attach to your wall is boring. However, using self watering box brackets can make it animated. It brings elegance to the medieval style of your house. To top it off, you can match the white box with calm color for your flowers. For instance, color like yellow may be a great idea to bring the sophisticated feel to the atmosphere.
Read also: Easy and Neat Rain Gutter Garden Ideas
Flower Self Watering Window Box
Flowers are classic idea to beautify your house, but it will always work like a charm. However, it is important to choose the type of your flowers so it enhance your house environment better. Here are ideas to arrange your flowers right below your pane using self watering window box :
Pink in White
Growing flower bushes are great trick to hide your water pipe of self watering box. Therefore, you can plant bushes of trumpet shaped flowers in your self watering box. Paint it white to match your white wooden wall to set up the mood. The color of vibrant pink sure will light up and energize you whenever you see it from your windowsill.
Gazing out to your window will be much more appealing when you can see grand view from it. Growing elegant purple color of flowers can do it for you! Corresponding them with a sleek black self watering box with brackets can uplift the view even more. Eventually, you will find the stylish mini garden you’re always wanting to have!
Beauty in Red
Planting bold color of flowers to your plain white box planter can boost the fun mood to your house. For example, red flowers or dark violet ones can do the work. Moreover, you can match the flowers with decorative foliage or grass to bring the rich feeling to your mini garden. Thus, a vibrant, poppy flower bed is perfectly made into your self watering box.
Mini Flower bed
Set up a mini flower bed under your window is not hard. You can start by matching up a contrasted color of flowers. For instance, you can combine pink and white ones to the bed. In order to create a lavish feeling, you can plant some types of grass to the box. To finish the look, plant some low growers right below your window box. Bushes of tropical plants can be a good option for the style.
Roses are stunning wherever you’re growing them. But it is even more stunning if you plant them by your window. They will look so marvelous on top of classic black window box. Imagine you wake up in the morning to your pink windowsill, how fulfilling is that? Eventually, growing pink rose flower bed by your window surely will bring fresh air to your day!
Self Watering Box
Unlike self watering window box, self watering box is generally easier to maintain. It is mainly because of the size and the nature of the planters. Self watering boxes tend to be smaller and don’t necessarily attach to walls so it is more practical to keep. Moreover, they are convenient to move around. It is also be easier to refill the water in the reservoir. Thus, having self watering box is much simpler and handy.
Tiered Wooden Box
Planting small succulents in a tiered box is cute. The grade of the box is giving a tall dimension and bringing out the plants to the spotlight. Furthermore, you can use the second tier as a water reservoir to your self watering box. It is better if you can detach the tiers so it is easier to refill the water. Thus, having a tiered wooden box can give you perfect dimension while giving fully functional box as a self watering container.
Large Standing Box
Big standing box is better to be placed outdoor. You can grow big plants inside, preferably vegetables. To make it even functional as decoration, you can attach a trellis on top of it so the creeping plants can spread on top of it. However, make sure to have your water pipe covered by a cap so it is not polluted by dirt or pests. Also, make sure to keep the water level because you’re growing many plants in one box. Thus, the plants will use more water than you expected so you may refill the water regularly.
Plain box is dull, right? How about giving it a futuristic touch by installing a metal net on the body of the box? It sure looks neat and sophisticated. This small addition is giving you a big change on your gardening game. However, the accessory can be tricky to have if you are setting a box with an opener to the water reservoir. Hence, it is better to have water pipe attach to your box so you can refill the water without having to take the metal net off.
Mini Standing Box
If having huge standing box is burdensome to you, you can switch it up with a smaller one. You can set up a white rectangular box then elevate it with metal accessory in the bottom. This design will give you a minimalist style which can fit in your house prettily. To finish the look off, you can plant different types of grass to mimic a bush of wild plants to contrast the slick design of your box.
Small Black Box
Small box is better for even smaller plants. You can grow succulents inside a mini box and place them in your working table. It will become your source of oasis to look at whenever you’re stress out with work. For your own convenience, you can have a box with an opener to the water reservoir so it doesn’t make a mess whenever you’re refilling the water. Eventually, you can have a little greenery to your desk without having too much effort to maintain it.
Self Watering Pots
Self watering pots are good for your indoor plants. They are mainly small in size and is very sensible to keep. You can use them to decorate your TV table or your table’s in living room, for instance. Furthermore, they will be relatively clean as you don’t have to water them directly. Here are five self watering pots ideas to compliment your home :
Using glass material as your self watering pots is great as you can directly control your water level. You can use small glass like containers in various sizes. You can plant herbs and vegetables, too! For instance, you can grow mints and chili bonsai. Furthermore, it is fairly easy to make because you only need a strip of string as wicking system to connect the water reservoir and the soil.
Colorful in All Sizes
Small plastic pots are outstanding for your porch. You can buy colorful pots in order to create an animated look to your front door. You can also plant tropical plants to make the colors even bolder. Above all, make sure you have a saucer to each pot so the excess water don’t go anywhere your porch floor.
Make it Yourself
Simple is best, that statement is very much true. You can make your own self watering pot very easily using an old plastic pot and glasses! Firstly, you make a box out of the glasses. Secondly, make a hole to it. Thirdly, make a hole to your pot as well. After that, you can attach a rope from the pot hole and put it inside the glass box filled with water. Lastly, you can add potting soil in the pot and plant small creeping plants. Eventually, this idea is really straightforward, yet it is working effectively!
Are you tired with monotonous idea of having self watering pots? Well, hanging pots surely bring new perspective to you! You can hang your self watering pots by a simple hook. If you think it will be tough to refill the water, please think twice. It is not as hard as you may think! You can easily attach a watering pipe on top of the pots. As your plants will technically be on the bottom, having the water pipe on the top will not be a problem at all!
Modern White Plastic
A plastic pot that you can detach is even more practical than any other self watering pot. You can have a water slightly bigger water reservoir and then have a growing bed that you can attach inside the water reservoir. You can use a thread of rope as the wicking system to connect the reservoir and the bed. Furthermore, add holes around the growing container so that they can be used to drain excess water back to the reservoir. Eventually, it will become a perfectly functional self watering pots that you can put on top of your kitchen table.
Self Watering Container
Self watering containers basically work by a simple science. Thus, it is not that hard to create one by yourself. You can use any old things to be your containers. Jars, bottles, even an old plastic pots you have at home, for instance. For the wicking systems, you can practically use a rope or string of cloth. Here are five alternatives that you can use as models :
Mason Jar with Fish!
Using mason jar as a planting pot may not be a such a creative idea anymore. However, you can add some spices to it. How does using it as a planting pot and an aquarium sound to you? It surely is an intriguing idea! Firstly, you can make a self watering pot by attaching a separate growing bed on top of the mason jar. Secondly, you can fill the growing bed with soil and your desired plant. Then, fill up the mason jar with water. Is it enough? No, it is not! The final touch is to put a fish into the water reservoir you have! You can decorate the reservoir with plastic plants and sands to add the liveliness of the pot. Now, it doesn’t look as dull as it’s supposed to be, right?
Other alternative that you can do is to use water bottle for self watering containers. Specifically, you can connect your water bottle to a plastic faucet designed for watering plants. After that, embed the faucet to the soil of your plants. Eventually, the water will slowly drop to the soil as it feeds the roots. Certainly, it is important to attach the faucet near the roots to make sure they receive all the water they need.
Similar to the water bottle, you can embed glass bulbs to your container to feed the plants. You can get the bird shaped of bulbs so they become a great addition to your home décor. However, it is important to measure how much water your plants need. It is advised to use this type of watering technique to small pots as they only contain small amount of water. Even though they can be good decorating items, they are not practical and cannot serve the purpose very well.
You can transform empty wine bottles into a self watering containers with easy steps. Firstly, cut one third of the bottle by the mouth. Secondly, turn the mouth upside down then dump it to the remaining bottle. After that, you can attach a rope as a wicking systems by the mouth of the bottle. Lastly, you can fill the mouth container with potting soil and your plants while the other part of bottle is filled with water. As the growing container is very limited, you can only plant small plants like herbs into it. You can plant parsley or mints, for instance. Ultimately, containers using wine bottles can be unique decoration items for your kitchen.
By now, you already know plenty of planting technique. For instance, you can upgrade old pots or hang them as hanging planters. So, why not combine everything into one idea? You can use old pots then hang them on the standing rail. After that, spice it up a little bit by making it upside down! This unusual idea will be an attractive decoration item to your front yard. Moreover, you can plant vegetables, too! Tomatoes are good with limited space, so you can plant them for instance. All you have to take care of is the watering pipe on top of the hanging pots. It is better to have them covered by caps so no pests or dirt will block the pipe. Finally, you have an extraordinary self watering pots to fill your garden.
In short, self watering containers are great for people who don’t have time to take care of plants but want to do gardening. They can also be applied to many forms of containers. For instance, boxes, pots, or window planters. Furthermore, they are also easy to make as long as you keep the essential part : the wicking mechanism. Eventually, using self watering containers are the most practical thing you can do in order to create your garden.