How To Keep Your Plants Alive When You’re On Vacation

If you’ve got indoor plants then you’ve likely come back from vacation to a home full of wilted (or dead) plants. It’s really disheartening to add to your post vacation blues. Fortunately, we’ve put together a couple of tips and tricks to keep your plants watered and cared for while you’re travelling.

Start By Trimming Your Plants

This may sound like a strange way to start but it really does make a big difference. A week before you leave, give all of your well established (larger or more bushy) plants a good trim. Remove any overhanging leaves or branches and trim off any dead or dying ones as well. Your plants will benefit from the trimming and they’ll now use less water during your time away.

Self Watering Pots & Planters

The first and perhaps the most obvious method is to use self watering pots or planters for your indoor plants. These come in a wide range of designs and each operate slightly differently, some require a connection to a water source and others have a jug or bottle which needs to be filled periodically.

Here are some of our favorites:

Concealed self watering base pot set. self watering pot plantsBuy Here

Water bulb self watering pot

self watering potBuy Here

Water wicking self watering pot setwicking self watering pot plantsBuy Here

Water Wicking

Water wicking is an art and it is difficult to get it right straight away, but it can be really effective and last for a long time. We recommend trying this method out a few weeks before you go on vacation to make sure that you’ve got it right.

Place a jug or vase of water next to your plant and then loop a piece of twine or natural fibre rope across from the jug to your plant’s soil. The water will wick from the jug to your plant’s soil while you’re gone and keep your plant hydrated.

Make sure that you use a natural fibre wick designed for water wicking and that the level of water in your jug is higher than then level of your plant’s soil.

Watering Bulbs

Watering bulbs have been around for years, and they really do work. They’re perfect for when you’re away for a week or two, simply fill them up and pop one into each pot you need to keep watered.

Here are some of our favorites:

PVC watering bulbsPVC watering bulbsBuy Here

Hand blown glass watering bulbs
hand blown glass watering bulbsBuy Here

Funky coloured watering bulbsfunky coloured watering bulbsBuy Here

Make A Terrarium

With a simply plastic sheet and a glass or plastic dome/box over your plant, you’ve made a simple terrarium which will keep the moisture in and create a warm and humid environment which many plants love.

You can also make a similar terrarium using clear garbage bags like these.

Remember to keep your terrarium out of direct sunlight or you may land up overheating your plants.

You could also try recycling an old coffee pot by building a Coffee Pot Terrarium.

Moisture Crystals

Moisture crystals work well as an addition to the above mentioned methods for when you’re going to be away from your home for up to a month. These tiny crystals help to retain moisture for longer periods of time, keeping your plant watered for longer.

These moisture crystals by Miracle-Gro work well for long periods of time.

Water In The Tub

As a last resort, but also one of the cheapest and easiest methods, you can put all of the plants you need to keep watered into your sink or tub without their drip trays and then fill then sink or tub with two centimeters / an inch or so of water. This will keep you plants watered for a long time and costs nothing to do.

Make sure that the pots you’ve put into the bath have holes in the bottom to absorb the water or this method wont work.

Have you ever tried keeping orchid? Here’s a guide to keeping orchids alive and flowering for years.

Do you have any tips and tricks for watering your plants when you’re out of the house? Let us know in the comments section below.


Michael Klements
Michael Klements
Hi, my name is Michael and I started this blog in 2016 to share my DIY journey with you. I love tinkering with electronics, making, fixing, and building - I'm always looking for new projects and exciting DIY ideas. If you do too, grab a cup of coffee and settle in, I'm happy to have you here.


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