Easy DIY self-watering pot

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The perfect Christmas gift might be a DIY self-watering container garden. Supply chains are causing shortages of many traditional holiday gifts. But in an hour you could create a one-of-a-kind present for your friends that will be used for months and maybe years to come.

Turn a plastic pot, storage tub, or bucket into a self-watering planter with herbs or holiday plants. The only limitations for this gift are how creative you can be with designs and plants.

Giving a beautiful plant is always a welcome gift. A beautiful Christmas Cactus, orchid, or poinsettia is that much more special when you plant it in a lovely, reusable, and self-watering container. A holiday herb garden definitely won't be something they'll get duplicates of this year, and you don't have to debate whether it will fit or if you overspent on the gift exchange.

Self-watering pots are expensive. A decorative ceramic 6-inch pot can easily cost $50.00. You can convert a 6-inch holiday picture or vase into a self-watering container for a fraction of that cost.

Supplies Needed

Flexible perforated drain pipe with cover

Dremel tool with cutting blade

A decorative plastic planter with no holes

An ordinary grocery store bag

Garden twine

PVC Pipe as tall as your container

garden rocks

potting soil

slow-release fertilizer

garden lime



Step by Step Instructions

Cover both ends of the expandable drainage pipe with an ordinary garbage bag and secure it with some garden twine. Puncture the bag with five or six tiny holes. These holes will allow water to exit the pipe and weep into the soil keeping it moist.

Lay the pipe in the bottom of your planter so the ends are facing each other. There should be a small space between the ends leaving a void for soil that will act as the wicking space.

Use the Dremel tool to cut a hole in the top of the pipe that is the same size as the PVC pipe opening.

Place the PVC pipe into the drainage pipe so that it just reaches the top of the pot.

Use the Dremel tool to cut a small hole in the side of the pot just under the top height of the drainage pipe. This will allow excess water to drain away from plants.

Put the garden rocks on top of the drainage pipe so that they cover the drainage hole in the pot.

Add potting mix to the pot making sure to fill the wicking space between the two ends of the drainage pipe. Fill the pot about two-thirds of the way to the top.

Mix in a small layer of garden lime into the soil.

Place the plants into the pot. The plants should fit inside the pot leaving enough room for a layer of finishing mulch at the top. Fill the remaining areas with potting soil.

In the center create a hole about 2 inches deep and bury a small layer of fertilizer. This will feed the plants for the next 6 months.

Top off the pot with a layer of mulch materials. This will help keep the moisture in the soil until the roots of the plants have a chance to establish.

Add water to the PVC pipe until it flows out of the overflow hole in the side.

A container garden is easy to create and can be a budget-friendly gift this year. It is a thoughtful gift for a friend who loves to cook and is always buying herbs at the store. It is a wonderful way to brighten a patio with annual flowers. The container gardens are the perfect solution for fruit trees and growing vegetables on the patio.

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