How to Water Plants When on Vacation


Vacation planning can include many things from packing to boarding pets, but often plants are neglected. Before you leave your home, you can do a few simple things before heading out the door to ensure your plants don't die in your absence. You can use the same system to water plants when on vacation on all of your plants whether they are potted inside or out, or planted in ground.

Step 1

Water your plants to dampen the soil all the way around the base each plant. For potted plants, make the soil moist but not saturated. For outdoor, in-ground plants, fully saturate the soil.

Step 2

Place a soda bottle or milk jug at each plant you want to water while you're gone. Use a hand trowel to loosen the soil lightly near the plant so the bottle or jug will sit up to 1 inch deep next to the plant.

Step 3

Hold a needle over a burning lighter to heat the sharp tip of the needle. While the needle is hot, poke four or five holes into the bottom of the bottle or jug.

Step 4

Cover the holes with your fingers and fill the bottle or jug with water. Put the cap back on the bottle and set the bottle in your dug area near the plant. The bottle should automatically water as the soil below the holes lets air into them.

Step 5

Repeat poking holes and filling bottles until all of the plants you need to keep watered have a bottle or jug on the soil. A full bottle should last about a week.

Things You'll Need

  • Soda bottle or milk jug, 2l or 1 gallon
  • Hand trowel
  • Needle
  • Lighter


  • "The Complete Houseplant Survival Manual"; Barbara Pleasant; 2005
Keywords: watering plants, vacation plant care, vacation plant watering

About this Author

Margaret Telsch-Williams is a freelance, fiction, and poetry writer from the Blue Ridge mountains. When not writing articles for Demand Studios, she works for as a contributor and podcast co-host.