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Ideas for Planter Drip Trays

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So often containers for houseplants and patio plants don’t come with drip trays. The dilemma is then how to water plants without staining floors and furniture. Often the weight of plant and soil plus container is too heavy to allow removing the potted plant to a sink or area that drainage water won’t damage each time the plant needs watering. You can purchase an appropriate-sized drip tray if appearance is important. Another approach is to find inexpensive items at stores and thrift shops that can be modified for drip trays, or recycle things from around the house. Make sure the item holds water without leaking.

Purchased Drip Trays

Many home and garden shops sell a wide variety of drip trays in different dimensions, colors and finishes. Online shopping is also an option. You can try for a close match to the color and finish of the existing pot or choose a clear plastic product that blends in with anything. The drip tray needs to be 1 to 2 inches larger than the pot it will serve. It is also a good idea for the drip tray to have some mechanism — such as built-in ridges or bumps — to raise the container off the bottom of the drip tray. This allows room for runoff water to accumulate without having the pot sit directly in water for a length of time — not a healthy situation for plant roots.

Drip Tray Alternatives

Leakproof pans or trays meant for other purposes can serve as drip trays for container gardening. For really big container plants, water heater pans come in several sizes. Usually in utilitarian colors, the outsides can be painted to match your decor. Look for round and rectangular galvanized metal or plastic pans and containers used for changing oil or for garage drip pans under car engines. For larger drip trays, put some bricks or tiles under plant containers to raise them off the bottom. Heavy plastic mortar tubs or lighter weight cat litter pans are good pebble tray candidates to house a collection of plants with similar cultural requirements. Provide a layer of washed rocks or gravel for the pots to sit on.

Drip Trays From Recycled Items

Saucers, plates and shallow bowls can all be repurposed as drip trays. Adapt shallow baskets for drip trays by lining them with heavy plastic sheeting that is stapled to the basket’s inside rim. Bakery or delicatessen containers often have either tops or bottoms that can be used as drip trays. Similarly trim down cleaned plastic soda or water bottles to use under smaller pots. Plastic refrigerator storage containers that have lost their lids serve a new purpose catching drips. Some premade pie crusts or purchased pies have sturdy pie plates that make good drip trays for single containers.

Drip Trays for Hanging Baskets

Although many plastic hanging baskets come with a drip tray, these are often shallow and don’t hold enough of the runoff. There are larger clamp-on plastic drip trays that are commercially available. Or outfit a decorative container without drainage holes for hanging and insert a potted plant within it, raising the plant off the container bottom with plastic foam peanuts or packed sphagnum moss so the top of the pot is level with the top of the decorative container.

  • The House Plant Expert, Book 2; D.G. Hessayon
  • Montgomery County Maryland: The Green Man: Indoor Plants for Hanging Around

Cathryn Chaney has worked as a gardening writer since 2002. Her horticultural experience working in the nursery industry informs her garden articles, especially those dealing with arid landscaping and drought-tolerant gardening. Chaney also writes poetry, which has appears in “Woman’s World” magazine and elsewhere. Chaney graduated from the University of Arizona in 1992 with a Bachelor of Arts in English.

Ideas for Planter Drip Trays. So often containers for houseplants and patio plants don’t come with drip trays. The dilemma is then how to water plants without staining floors and furniture. Often the weight of plant and soil plus container is too heavy to allow removing the potted plant to a sink or area that …

Plant Saucer Use – Do Potted Plants Need Saucers

Whether grown indoors or out, there is no doubt that the use of potted plants is a quick and easy way to expand your garden. Varying in size, shape, and color, pots and containers can certainly add vibrancy and life to any space. While each plant container is unique, there are a few key aspects to look for, including dishes for container plants.

Do Potted Plants Need Saucers?

In choosing containers, drainage will play a vital role in overall plant health. Using containers which are able to adequately control soil moisture levels will be imperative to success. While purchasing pots with drainage holes may seem obvious, other aspects of growing in containers may not be as clear. Many first-time growers, for example, may be left to ask, “What are plant saucers for?”

Saucers under plants are shallow dishes used to catch excess water that drains from a container planting. While growers are sometimes able to find matching pot and saucer sets, it is more common that containers do not come with one, and the saucer must be bought separately.

Adding a plant saucer to containers can be useful in increasing the decorative appeal of potted plants. Specifically, small stones and pebbles can be added to larger saucers to add texture. One of the main positive attributes of saucers comes from their use with indoor potted plants. Plants that have been watered are able to drain without worry of leaks across floors or carpets. If using saucers in this manner, always make certain to remove the saucer and drain the water. Standing water can promote excess soil moisture and cause plant roots to rot.

Plant saucers can also be used with outdoor containers. Just as those used indoors, they will need to be drained after each watering. Standing water in outdoor saucers can be especially detrimental, as it can encourage the presence of pests like mosquitoes.

Opinions regarding whether or not growers need to use saucers under plants can vary widely. While these dishes for container plants have many positive attributes, there are also some drawbacks. Ultimately, plant saucer use will vary depending upon the needs of the plant, the growing conditions, and the preference of the gardener.

Varying in size, shape, and color, pots and containers can certainly add vibrancy and life to any space. While each plant container is unique, there are a few key aspects to look for, including dishes for container plants. Do you really need them? Find out in this article.