The 12 Best Self-Watering Planters of 2022

Our top choice for saving time and water is the WetPot Self-Watering Pot.

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Watering is one of the single most important parts of gardening when it comes to determining overall success. Even though it sounds simple, there are many things that can go wrong. The container might have bad drainage, leading to root rot or other problems, but probably most common of all is that you just forget to water your plant altogether. Don’t feel bad—this happens to even the best gardeners. This is exactly why self-watering planters are such a great solution! These containers will all help you have gorgeous plants with minimum effort.

There are many great reasons to use self-watering containers, and among them include water conservation, overall convenience, and even reducing the risk of plant disease. You could even make your own version of self-watering pots for years using a simple wine bottle. Most containers have really specific instructions as to how much water to use and will tell you when to add more, and the options are plentiful.

Here are the best self-watering planters on the market:

Best Overall: MoMA WetPot Self-Watering Pot

5
WetPot Self-Watering Pot

Dimensions: 7.4 W x 6.5 inches (Medium) | Assembly Required: No

We love the plastic-free modern design of this planter, which consists of a terracotta planter nestled inside a larger glass reservoir. Fill the reservoir with water, and your plants roots will absorb just the right amount of water through the planter’s walls. The clear glass design makes it easy to see when it’s time to add more water. 

It’s available in three sizes, and can be used indoors or outdoors as long as the air temperature stays above freezing. If you have a favorite plant or flower that you’ve tried to grow in the past but haven’t succeeded, you might try again with a self-watering pot. It might be just the thing to help you make it work.

Best Recycled: Etsy Wine Bottle Self-Watering Planter

4.6
Recycled Wine Bottle Self-Watering Planter

Etsy

Dimensions: Varies | Assembly Required: No

If you’re crafty and have tools for cutting glass, this style of wine bottle planter is possible to DIY. Or you can save yourself some time and get an upcycled planter from a maker on Etsy, like this one based in California. These planters are perfect for planting herbs in front of a sunny window, and each one is created from an empty wine bottle. 

The self-watering rope is secured through the bottle’s cork, so virtually no part of the wine bottle goes unused. You can choose a planter with or without a chalkboard label.

Best Splurge: Etsy African Violet Self Watering Planter Pot

Handmade Self-Watering Planter

Via Etsy

Dimensions: 6 to 7 inches wide x 4 to 5 inches tall | Assembly Required: No

This beautiful handcrafted pot features four holes around the base of the planter, allowing your plant to draw water up from the outer dish as needed. Each ceramic pot in made-to-order by Etsy maker Angela in Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania. She also offers white, green, and deeper shades of blue. 

Because each pot is handmade, the hight and diameter may vary, and may take two to four weeks to craft and ship. 

Best Budget: B SEPOR Ceramic Plant Watering Spikes

Plant Watering Spikes

Amazon

Dimensions: 2 x 7 inches | Assembly Required: No

If you truly want the most affordable solution, buy these watering spikes in bulk. They allow you to turn just about any existing gardening pot into a self-watering one. All you need is a recycled wine bottle or another glass bottle. Fill with water and then add to the spike for a slow-release watering system. These are popular to use while on vacation, and they work great for everyday use as well.  While it’s not a full planter, it’s a nice way to convert many of your favorite pots into a more sustainable option.

Best Windowsill: Amazing Creation Window Herb Planter Boxes 3 Pack

Amazing Creation Windowsill Box

Courtesy of Amazon

Dimensions: 9 x 3 x 5.5 inches | Assembly Required: No

Have your dream windowsill garden with this planter box. The shape of the container is purposefully designed to give your plants more room to take root and grow bigger. This set of three boxes comes in three colors—coffee, orange, and green. At around 10 inches long and 4 inches deep, they give you plenty of space for your favorite herbs.

The box material is sturdy, fade-free, crack-resistant, and safe for food. These would also make the perfect gift for a gardener in your life.

Why so much plastic?

We don't love how many of the self-watering planters on the market are made from new plastic, but we hope that you'll use them for many years and save lots of energy and water during the planter's lifetime.

Best Hanging Baskets: VIVOSUN Self Watering Hanging Baskets 2 Pack

Self watering hanging baskets

Dimensions: 10.2 x 8.3 inches | Assembly Required: No

Hanging planters in general don’t tend to be the most efficient when it comes to watering. As soon as you water most hanging baskets, it drips out and you need to add more. This leads to a lot of watering—and honestly, a lot of forgetting, which can lead to wilt-y or dead plants. But you don’t have to worry about that with self-watering hanging baskets.

They are perfect to use inside or out, and you can finally go on vacation without needing someone to stop in and check on your plants. This particular design comes in a two pack and has four different colors to choose from. They are made from a durable plastic that shouldn't rust, peel, or fade.

Best for Container Recipes: Lechuza Canto Cube Self-Watering Garden Planter

Lechuza Self-Watering Garden Planter

Amazon

Dimensions: 14 x 14 x 14 inches | Assembly Required: No

Are you looking for a container big enough to recreate one of those container recipes that you see at the garden center or online? This 14-inch cube will do it. It includes a liner, which you can lift out and in for easy planting. This also allows you to separate your plants from the water reservoir to aerate plant roots and give it room for optimal nutrition.

This planter also includes a drainage plug, so if excess water collects outside from rainwater, then you can easily drain it. You can choose from three different colors, all which mimic a classy concrete look. The planter weighs 3.3 pounds.

Best Large Capacity: Keter Easy Grow 31.7 Gallon Raised Garden Bed

Keter Easy Grow Patio Garden Flower Plant Planter Raised Elevated Garden Bed, Brown

Courtesy of Amazon

Dimensions: 44.9 W x 19.4 D x 29.8 H inches | Assembly Required: Yes

This is one of the largest self-watering planters on the market, sitting around 44 inches wide by nearly 20 inches deep. It has a water gauge that will tell you exactly when you need to add more water. It also has an added drainage system in case it rains more than your plants need.

Put this planter anywhere you want (the rattan design is weather resistant), and it’s especially popular on a deck or patio. It’s big enough to grow your favorite flowers, veggies, or herbs. It weighs 18.5 pounds, so it's sturdy but may not be easy to move when full.

Best Indoor: DecoPots Self Watering Planter Modern Flower Pot

DecoPots Self-Watering Modern Planter

Amazon

Dimensions: 7.1 x 7.1 x 9.2 inches (Medium) | Assembly Required: No

This affordable pot is specifically designed to keep insects out, which can often be a problem for indoor plants. In addition, it’s created to have good air circulation for overall root health—another must for houseplants. The water indicator will show you at a quick glance how much water you have left in the water reservoir, allowing you to reduce your watering to only once a week or even less. With more than 10 different pot colors to choose from, you’ll be able to find one that matches your decor.

Best Design: GreeneryUnlimited Sutton 15 Self Watering Indoor Ceramic Plant Pot

Sutton 15 Self Watering Pot

Etsy

Dimensions: 6 x 6 x 4.75 inches | Assembly Required: No

This unique ceramic planter will make a statement in anyone’s home, and it’s especially good for trailing houseplants as they grow and hang over the edges. According to the creator, it has a “patented sub-irrigation system that allows plants to drink from the roots, just as nature intended.” It’s not a very big planter, but you can be sure it’s one you’ll have for many years and will keep your plants thriving. It's available in eight colors: pale salmon, terracotta, speckled egg, white, black, grey, yellow, and cobalt blue.

Best Hydroponic: Lettuce Grow Farmstand

4.7
Lettuce Grow Farmstand

Courtesy of Lettuce Grow

Dimensions: 22 x 22 x 44 inches (12 plant option) | Assembly Required: Yes

If you’re interested in taking the hydroponic plunge, The Farmstand offers a flexible model that lets you grow anywhere from 12 to 36 plants. Available in five sizes, you can add or subtract stackable rings to accommodate your desired number of plants.

This planter is made from recycled plastic, and uses 95 percent less water than traditional gardening. It will need to be plugged in at all times to run the planter’s pump, and you may also want to consider adding a drip tray underneath it. For every 10 of these planters sold, one Farmstand is donated to schools, nonprofits and community organizations through a partnership with the Whole Kids Foundation. 

Lettuce Grow Farmstand
Left: The Farmstand with Glow Rings assembled, before adding the plants. Center: The Farmstand with seedlings added. Right: Plant growth after three weeks.

Margaret Badore

What Editors Say

"Once set up, I found the Farmstand is very easy to use and very rewarding. It allowed me to grow an impressive amount of herbs and greens. If you are enthusiastic about growing your own food, potentially all year round, it offers practically guaranteed success and many healthy, delicious meals." ~ Margaret Badore, Treehugger Senior Editor

Best Gift: PlantivityCo Marbled Ceramic Self-Watering Planter

Marbled Ceramic Self-Watering Planter

Etsy

Dimensions: 3.6 x 3.6 x 4 inches | Assembly Required: No

This planter would make the perfect gift for a friend, teacher, or office buddy. Available in pink, blue, or green, it has a cool two-toned look with the main planter nestled inside a glass container. It would be the perfect container for a little succulent or cacti. Like other self-watering pots, it has a string that extends to the bottom, soaking up water as needed.

Final Verdict

Our top choice for a self-watering planter is the WetPot Self Watering Pot. But if you’re in the market for a bigger container that can hold several different plants, we recommend the Keter Resin Elevated Garden

What to Look for in a Self-Watering Planter

Overall Size

Planters will often look bigger in the photos than when you see them in person, so be aware of the overall size upfront. It can be challenging to find a large self-watering planter, but many have multiple size options. If possible, order the largest size available because you’ll definitely be glad you did long-term as your plants grow bigger. Then once you do have your pot, make sure you don’t overfill it. It can be tempting to put several plants in a single pot, but don’t do this unless you actually have the room. Crowding your plants can cause root and aeration problems. 

Drainage

All garden pots should have drainage, and this is true for your self-watering plants as well. Read the descriptions and labels carefully to make sure the pots have been designed with aeration and drainage. If you happen to fall in love with a pot that doesn’t have drainage, be sure to add your own to the bottom before you add plants. This will impact your overall growing success, weather gardening indoors or outside.

Reservoir

Every container will be slightly different in the way the water reservoir works. Some will have a wick system, designed to bring water up to the plant roots. Others will have a larger holding tank, which means you might not have to add water as often. Both systems will work well. It’s just good to know the type of watering system you have and the overall capacity for it. This will make a difference in how frequently you’ll need to add water.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • How do self-watering pots work?

    Most pots have a water storage tank, often at the bottom of the bottom. As the plants need water, the roots soak it up from the reservoir or through a wicking system. Instead of having to check the overall look of your plant or the soil itself, you just keep an eye on the reservoir and refill it as needed.

  • Are self-watering pots effective?

    Yes, they work really well. Gardeners love self-watering pots because you can often add your plants and then forget about them. Since the water is out of the way from elements like sun and wind, it lasts a lot longer and is a lot more sustainable overall.

  • Which plants are good for self-watering planters?

    Most plants are good candidates for self-watering pots. Houseplants are especially good options because you don’t have to worry about under-watering or over-watering. Annuals you’d plant in hanging baskets are also good options because you’ll save so much water over the course of a season.

  • How often do you need to add water?

    This will depend on the plants you’re growing and how much water they need. For instance, a veggie plant growing in the heat of summer is going to require a lot more water and refills. However, a succulent growing as a houseplant might rarely need a refill. Know how to read your water reservoir and when you need to add more. Then stay on top of checking it so your plants will thrive!

Why Trust Treehugger?

Author Stacy Tornio is an expert in garden topics. Stacy has been writing about gardening for years, as the author of multiple books and as the former editor of Birds & Blooms magazine. She is also a certified master gardener and naturalist.