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Owning a houseplant comes with a small commitment as they need to be watered regularly (with the exception of cacti or succulents, who can go months without water). That does not mean you are unable to go on vacations, or leave your house for an extended period of time. Here are some tips and tricks to keep your leafy companion alive and luscious to greet you upon your return from your holiday:
If you will be gone for less than 7 days, it is sufficient to give your plants ample water just before you leave. Set them in a cool and shady spot so that the water will not evaporate off too quickly.
Although leafy houseplants should be watered regularly, most houseplants store enough water in their leaves to withstand a draught of up to a week. However, do not do this too often as it will affect the growth of the plant.
Take a short piece of cloth, twine, yarn, or rope – anything that is good at absorbing water will do. This will act as a wick. On one end, dip the wick into a container filled with water. On the other end, insert the wick a couple of inches into the soil of your potted plant. Using the principles of diffusion, water will gradually be pulled up from the container via the wick, and into the soil.
Fill up a plastic water bottle, and poke a few small holes in the bottle cap. Then, turn the plastic bottle upside down and stick the top into the soil. This will drip water into the soil at a slow pace, ensuring a steady stream of water for your plant even when you are gone.
If you’re not into messy DIY, or just prefer a simple automatic drip system that looks chic in your home, you can invest in a watering globe. These are blown glass baubles that hold water and slowly dispenses them to plants. A fully filled watering globe lasts between 7 to 14 days depending on the size of your pot. Watering globes can also be used all the time, reducing the frequency at which you have to manually water your plants.
Shop here to view our selection of watering globes.
Cover your houseplant with a clear plastic bag. This reduces and captures the moisture lost from evaporation, and drips water droplets back down onto the plant. The plastic bag should only be covered loosely over the plant, and not tied at the base. This ensures that the plant still receives enough carbon dioxide to survive.
This is the old fashioned, tried-and-tested method of ensuring your plants get the water they need while you are away. Entrust your plants to a neighbour, friend, or relative, and leave them specific instructions on how often and how much to provide for your plants.
The above methods will help to put your mind at ease while you are gone on vacation, ensuring that your plants get the water they require. Don’t worry if you have to be away for a while – follow these steps and your plants will be waiting for you when you return!