Plants, just like any living thing, require tender loving care in order for them to keep looking their best. But not every plant parent can keep up with their plants’ needs: especially those who have a little more to worry about than caring for them in their plates.
Automatic plant waterers are like a nanny for your plants that do the watering job and give them hydration when needed. They’re so simple to set up, and you don’t need to be tech-savvy or green-thumbed to get them going!
I find time to take care of my little garden that began during the pandemic. But as things normalized and work got heavier, I am often greeted by the fuzzy tantrums and displays of some of my precious ones: droopy looking leaves (oh, the drama!) or worse: the dreaded orange death. To avoid the horror of seeing my plants say goodbye for the lack of a drink, I diligently sought and found a life-saving remedy aka automatic plant waterers! No longer will I run a risk of forgetting to water my babies!
So for all fellow plant-lovers out there, here’s a collection of automatic plant waterers to keep your garden looking lush and bountiful! We have also included video tutorials along with the recommendations.
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7 Best Automatic Plant Waterers
Not all plants are created equal, and all of us have differing requirements and preferences. The automatic plant waterer market is no exception, so here are the top 7 automatic plant waterers that I’ve found to be the most user-friendly and helpful based on different garden sizes, plant needs and budget.
|Product||Best For||Water Source||Coverage||Short / Long Term||Features||Considerations|
|Moistenland WIFI Automatic Plant Waterer||Indoor||Indoor, Pump based reservoir||15 Plants||Long Term (1 to 2 months)||Easy Management via App, Wifi Connectivity||Device is not waterproof, tubes need to be checked regularly for leaks. Device doesn’t support 5G.|
|Raindrip R560DP Automatic Drip Irrigation||Hanging Plants and Beds||Indoor/outdoor; connect to water tap||20 Plants||Long Term (connect direct to faucet)||Kit already includes a lot in preparing the irrigation system for hanging planters and pots||Adjusting the timer can be challenging. Some reviews mention challenges in assembly.|
|MIXC 226FT Greenhouse Micro Drip Irrigation Kit||Outdoor||Outdoor, connect to water tap||All plants within 160 sq. ft.||Long Term (connect direct to faucet)||Watering bigger gardens are made convenient, just turn on the water source. Strength of the flow or spray depends on the nozzle used.||Timer is bought separately.|
|Blumat Classic Plant Watering Stakes||Short Term||Indoor, gravity-based,||Variations contain from 3 to 50 pcs||Short Term (2-3 weeks)||Depending on the capacity of the water container, this can last for several weeks.||Not advisable for bigger garden setups.|
|10 Pcs Clear Plant Watering Globes||Small Plants||Indoor, gravity-based,||5 to 20 plants in varying sizes||Short Term (4-7 days)||Aesthetically appealing and is great for plants in small living spaces.||Watering capacity is limited to the size of the globe, not advisable for bigger garden setups|
|Glowpear Self-Watering Urban Garden Planter||Small Spaces||Indoor / outdoor, reservoir||5 to 10 plants in varying sizes||Long Term (3 weeks)||Versatile for apartments or growing crops in small places.||Not expandable|
|Make Good Virgo Self-Watering Wall Planters||Walls||Indoor, reservoir||3 to 6 plants depending on set||Long Term (1-2 weeks)||Convenient for apartments or plants in small places.||Not expandable|
With everyone on their gadgets already, this automatic watering system from Moistenland makes it easy for the busy plant parent to tend to their plants: everything can be controlled and scheduled in their smartphone app, as long as you are connected to WiFi. It also informs you if the reservoir has low storage via the app as well, so you are always alerted if a refill is necessary. Though the main system is not waterproof and you still need to check the machine regularly for leaks and spills, this convenient system can water up to 15 plants.
- “I’ve used this watering system for my indoor plants while away on and off for 2 months. So far I am quite pleased with its performance and reliability. I am using batteries. I have set the plants up on my shower floor with a large bucket as a reservoir. There are a few minor leaks with the micro tubing but this is of no consequence because of where I have the plants set up. It really has saved the hassle of getting someone in to look after my beloved plants! I would recommend a trial for a week or so to ensure you’ve got your timing and water volume correct before relying on it.”, J Holdom
Plants in hanging planters can be tricky to water, but with Raindrip’s automatic irrigation system, automating this process of plant care becomes easy. The kit contains a knob-type battery operated timer, tubes, spikes, elbows, and tees, making it easy to create a small irrigation system to water 20 plants. Though reviews mention some challenges in installing the product, especially with the tubes, it is effective once set.
- “I used this all summer on my plants in the front yard. It was so hot that I was watering 2-3 times a day sometimes. This made life so easy and never missed a beat.” Mark
- “Basic product, but very good for simple setups. Be aware that it has a timer, but no clock so the time you set it is the time it will water for you, and it will begin working at the upcoming interval.” Leo
For homes with a landscape setup, watering can be made easier with this irrigation system from MIXC. The system contains sprinklers, hoses and drip systems which can support plants within a 160 sq. ft. area. It lessens the hassle of having to use the hose and manually spray around your garden, just turn on the water source and you are good to go. You can buy a timer to make it more automated and convenient.
- “Great price for an easy to assemble (once you learn to use hot water to soften hose ends) product that covers a small garden adequately. It takes some adjusting of the various nozzles to get a decent flow of water to all nozzles. Buy it, you won’t regret it.” Michael M.
If you are planning a short trip away and want to make sure that your plants remain hydrated and happy, you may simply consider purchasing a watering stake. They are simple to set up and can last up to a few weeks. Better yet there is no need to repot and plants stay in their exact positions! You just put the tube into a water source (a container with water you think is enough for the duration of your trip) and bury the stake to keep the soil moist in your pot. Watering stakes hydrate slowly and deeply, ensuring the roots get enough water to keep the plant healthy. Its as easy as “plug and away”!
- “I have a plant on my desk that needs watering all the time. I bought this product and it’s great!” Amazon Customer
- “Works as intended once you get the little line purged. As others have mentioned it’s best to fill them up when submerged in water to avoid an air pocket in the top. We were gone for 3 weeks and all the plants looked better than when we left.” Brian F.
If tubes and a bulky water container don’t look appealing to you, (it can be a home for mosquitoes, especially if uncovered) go with watering globes. Just fill the globe with water and stick it in the soil for the slow yet deep drink the plant needs while you are away. Since globes rely on their size for water capacity, they typically last 4-7 days. You can go with the simple clear globes or the ones with colors, for a cute look. Globes are best for small plants.
- “Very inexpensive, I was skeptical about them working. I filled it up and it works perfectly. I need to order some more small ones. The big ones are a little top-heavy if you’re not using them in a big plant. I will be buying more.” Amazon Customer
- “I went out of town for 1 week and made sure I watered my plants before placing this device into the plant pots. When I got home my plants were still in good condition. They were nicely watered and still alive! This was a worthy purchase.” Amazon Customer
Some weather conditions also make watering challenging for some plant parents. When the weather’s on the cooler side, excess water especially when you water from the top, can cause leaves to accumulate mold. This can be harmful to the plant in the long run. If you have plants that are very particular with this kind of care, or if you just want to have a tidier way of watering plants, consider placing them in a self-watering reservoir like this from Glowpear.
They come in different sizes for your urban farming needs such as herbs and vegetables and is compact enough to fit any balcony or apartment room. Just refill the reservoir as necessary to keep the soil continuously (and effortlessly) moist.
- “Love these self watering planters, easy to set up, easy to use, easy to winterize. Great for tomatoes, in the beginning of the summer season we only have to water the containers once a day, as the tomato plants grow (we have fit 4 in them before, easier if 2 or 3 tomato plants) later season, July and August takes two waterings a day. Love them.” Amazon Customer
- Bought 3 of the mini bench and works great so far” Amy
Watering hanging plants need not be a mess with this self watering reservoir from Make Good. These planters look stylish and assist in making creeping plants feel at ease as decorative elements. Reviews indicate its easy to install and sturdy nature as plus points, along with its versatile all white design that is a sure fit for any interior.
- “I was looking for some planter baskets that I could hang in a skylight I made in our house but kept finding buckets that were too small for what I was looking for. I like that these have the drainage pot insert and come with “s” hooks to hang them up. You can also hang them from the wall easily. They look great and aren’t heavy either.” Gabriella
Purchasing an automatic waterer for your plants depends on the length of time you would need them, the size of your garden, and your budget.
Short term: For short term use such as a sudden weekend getaway or a week-long trip, you can do well with gravity-based plant waterers such as stakes, spikes or globes. Depending on the kind of plant that you have, some hardy plants can last without drinking for a week or two.
Long term: For those who are looking for something long term, such as plant parents who are too busy to even include watering in their schedules or for those who would be away for quite a while, self-watering pots or reservoirs or the more sophisticated automatic watering system might be worth considering. These devices have their own pump and they can be programmed according to the water needs and frequency of watering for each plant.
Oftentimes, creating your own allows you to custom fit the system to your specific garden needs and help you save more bucks too. Unleash your creative side and create an automated watering system of your own with these supplies:
- 2 water containers (one small, one big around 4 to 5 gallons)
- 2 vacation timers (get ones that turn on for only one minute)
- 2 small submersive pumps (like the ones used in small fountains)
- Vinyl tubing (make sure it fits the outlets of the pump)
- Medium sized binder clips (common trick to use as support or alternative to hot glue)
- Ground fault interrupter (if you intend to place the DIY system close to where electricity is.)
Once you have your supplies, follow these step by step instructions provided here: https://www.instructables.com/Automatic-Plant-Watering-Device-simple-version/
Automatic plant waterers are a excellent way to ensure your plants stay hydrated even when you’re away for extended periods of time. Whether it’s a gravity-based system such as stakes or a more sophisticated automatic watering system with its own pump, these devices will guarantee that your plants acquire the exact amount of water they demand. Whichever you choose, do remember to monitor your plants and adjust the automated plant waterer accordingly for optimal nourishment, growth, and happiness of your green friends!
Happy gardening! 🙂 🌿✨