Urban gardening is a hot new trend. In cities everywhere, tenants are looking for a way to grow their own herbs and greens for salads and smoothies. Not everyone has room for a raised bed or in-ground garden, and community pea patches are inconvenient and overcrowded. Our busy lifestyles prevent us from being able to carefully monitor soil conditions, and it's easy to lose weeks or months of growth from just a bit of neglect. Thankfully, self watering containers address the issue of over or under watering.


Whether you are looking for self watering containers to house an herb garden on your kitchen windowsill or you are looking for decorative planters for your porch or patio, there are lots of options available. We have taken the guesswork out of choosing the best self watering containers for your specific application and space requirements by reviewing the best self watering containers available today. Read on to determine which self watering container is right for you.

Product FAQ

What Are Self Watering Containers?

How Do Self Watering Containers Work?

Where Can You Buy Self Watering Containers

 How We Reviewed

The following products were reviewed based on the following parameters: features, pros and cons, price, and where to buy.


 Overall Price Range Of This Product (And Similar Products)

flower in container

Image via Pixabay.com

The price of self watering containers varies widely. The products we reviewed in this article range in price from $12 to $145. Products on the low end of the price range are smaller than the products on the high end of the price range. More expensive products tend to be made from higher quality materials and have more elaborate watering systems.

What We Reviewed

Features

This pot features a handy water level indicator that lets you know when your houseplants need water. Thanks to the reservoir, watering frequency is reduced to weeks instead of days. These self watering containers work great with all types of plants, flowers, herbs, and seed starts. The passive hydroponic action creates a balance between root zone oxygen and water for lush growth and more flowers. The planter includes two quarts of Fiber Soil, a superior growing medium that allows plant roots to breathe. The planters come in vibrant colors to complement any decor.

Pros

  • Passive hydroponic system
  • Water level indicator
  • Includes Fiber Soil

Cons

  • Reservoir fill-hole is too small
  • Water level indicator sticks
  • Small water reservoir

Features

This planter features a 13.8" diameter flared top, a ventilated base, and a large reservoir that draws water to the plant's roots. These self watering containers have a quick view lip that shows the water level in the reservoir and a flared top for ease in handling. The matte latte-colored finish deflects heat from sunlight to preserve moisture in the soil. The modern design will compliment any decor. The planter measures 14" x 14" x 11" and weighs approximately 1.2 pounds.

Pros

  • Flared top for easy handling
  • Light color deflects sunlight to retain moisture
  • Quick view lip water level indicator

Cons

  • Difficult to fill reservoir
  • Roots grow into the reservoir and are difficult to remove
  • Reservoir develops leaks

Features

These self watering containers stack on top of each other so you can grow up to 12 plants in one square foot of space. Each tray will accommodate four plants. Water the top tier and the water seeps down to the lower tiers. The containers also include a drip tray to catch excess water. The containers can be used indoors on the kitchen counter or outdoors on the patio. The containers are made in the USA and they make a great gift for the gardener on your list.

Pros

  • Grow up to 12 plants in one square foot of space
  • Includes drip tray
  • Made in the USA

Cons

  • Over waters the bottom level
  • Top level dries out quickly
  • Small planting area

Features

These self watering containers are made of UV stable recyclable plastic here in the USA. Each planter has an attached basin that can be filled to self water the plant once the root system is established. When plants are starting to grow, they should be watered from the top until their roots are established. The fill spot is unobtrusive and does not detract from the appearance of the planter.

Pros

  • Made of UV stable recyclable plastic
  • Unobtrusive fill spot
  • Made in the USA

Cons

  • Difficult to fill reservoir
  • Not very big

Features

These self watering containers feature a signature water reservoir that supplies water to the plants as they need it. Gardeners can monitor the water level in the reservoir with the water level indicator that shows when it needs to be refilled. The planter also includes Lechuza Pon, a specially formulated substrate that separates the potting soil from the reservoir, aerates the plant roots, provides nutrition to the plants, and also helps to regulate the water supply. This elegant planter is designed for use indoors. It has a special liner that can be removed from the planter to clean the plants in the shower or trim the roots.

Pros

  • Elegant German design fits on windowsills
  • Water level indicator shows when refill is needed
  • Specially formulated substrate included

Cons

  • Water level indicator gets stuck
  • Substrate must be replaced when repotting plants
  • Must water from top until roots are established

Lechuza 15577 Delta 20 Self-Watering Garden Planter, Espresso Metallic
  • DELTA 20 is the perfect way to bring your windowsill to life
  • Made in Germany of durable frost and UV resistant PP plastic for indoor use
  • Simple yet elegant design complements any decor

Features

These self watering containers feature a water level indicator to show you when it is time to water your plants. You only need to water your plants on a weekly basis instead of a daily basis. Root zone oxygen and water are maintained in the ideal balance using the unique passive hydroponic action. Plants thrive in this container because their roots are able to grow and breathe in the Fiber Soil growing medium. The planter has sleek lines and comes in a variety of vibrant colors to complement any decor. These self watering containers make an excellent gift for gardeners.

Pros

  • Passive hydroponic system
  • Water level indicator shows when water is required
  • Includes Fiber Soil planting medium

Cons

  • Water level indicator gets stuck
  • Requires constant fertilization
  • Planting medium stays saturated

Features

This growing system is award-winning, high tech, and maintenance free. It controls the soil conditions and increases the yield of your garden with less water, fertilizer, and effort. This system eliminates the need for digging, weeding, and guesswork. The kit includes fertilizer, dolomite, two germination covers, and caster wheels for portability. The EarthBox will hold 2 cubic feet of potting mix (which isn't included with your purchase of the kit). This kit helps you grow large, tasty vegetables and beautiful flowers.

Pros

  • Holds 2 cubic feet of soil  
  • Controls soil conditions for increased yield
  • Includes wheels for easy movement

Cons

  • Requires daily watering initially
  • Requires additional nutrients for some vegetables (tomatoes)
  • Not for indoor use—leaks when over-watered

Features

This planting system includes both a container and built-in staking to support tall plants. The staking provides support for tomatoes, beans, peas, and other climbing plants. Water and nutrients are delivered from the easy to fill reservoir under the container, helping to avoid over or under watering. The container is ideal for patios and apartments and holds approximately 20 liters of potting soil. The staking expands to 4' tall and will handle the weight of varieties with high yields.

Pros

  • Included staking expands to 4' for climbing plants
  • Reservoir delivers water and nutrients
  • Holds 20 liters of soil

Cons

  • Plastic degrades over time
  • Staking is flimsy and breaks
  • Only holds one plant

Features

This planter is designed in New England style to add a charming touch to any patio or deck. It is made from 100% high-grade polyethylene molded plastic. The planter has a reservoir created by the double wall design. The resin contains UV inhibitors for long-lasting, fade-free performance, and the weatherproof construction allows the planter to be used year-round with little winter preparation. The planter is 20" x 20" x 20". The interior is 4.5" smaller than it appears from the outside due to the reservoir.

Pros

  • Charming New England design
  • Double wall design with reservoir
  • Made in the USA

Cons

  • Darker colors burn plant leaves in direct sunlight
  • Heavy to move

Features

This planter is a modular unit specifically designed for growing fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers in an urban environment. The planter has an integrated self watering system so your plants will thrive.  Plants can be watered from the top, or the reservoir can be filled for passive hydroponic watering. The heavy-duty construction allows the garden to be placed indoors or outdoors. The modular design allows the planter to stand alone or connect with additional modules to design a garden that will suit your space and budget requirements.

Pros

  • Water from the top or use the passive hydroponic reservoir for self watering
  • Modular design can support connection of multiple units
  • Suitable for indoor or outdoor use

Cons

  • Quality control issues—parts don't always align properly
  • Reservoir may leak
  • Difficult to install water drip tray

 The Verdict

flower planter at a nearby lake

Image via Pixabay.com

If you are looking for a self watering container for your kitchen windowsill or another room in your house, we believe the best product is the Lechuzza 15577 Delta 20 Self Watering Planting System. Its sleek German design has an elegant modern appearance. The product includes an inorganic particulate compound that aerates the roots and regulates the plant's water supply.

If you'd like self watering containers for outdoor use, our research tells us the best product is the Mayne Fairfield 5825B Patio Planter. Its generous 15.5" x 15.5" planter box allows multiple plants and the double wall construction creates a generous water reservoir that allows for less frequent watering. The charming New England design looks elegant on a porch or patio, and the durable resin won't fade in the sun.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here