Apartment Garden Blues (Blog): No Drainage Holes

Terra cotta plant containers drainage holesYou just bought a cute plant pot at the garden shop and want to use it in your balcony garden. But you bring it home and realize that it has no drainage holes! If you're an apartment dweller who doesn't own power tools so you can make your own drainage holes, don't fret. You can still use this plant pot. Here's how.

If you can't borrow a power drill from someone you know, you can still use a plant pot with no drainage holes. You just have to plant using a different technique and care for the container plant differently. Plant the new plant container like you would a terrarium. Terrariums do just fine, and they have no drainage. First add a layer of small pebbles to the bottom of the pot. Cover that layer with aquarium carbon (found at a pet store) and a layer of sphagnum moss (also found at pet stores). Now you can put in your potting soil and your plant. These layers will unfortunately leave less room for your plant's roots to grow, so choose a smaller plant to grow in this pot. Also remember to water this plant less than your other plants. The layers of pebbles, carbon and moss at the bottom will prevent root rot if you do not overwater, but too much water, and your plant will be in serious trouble!

So decide if your new pot is worth the trouble of either borrowing a power drill or planting it with this terrarium method. If it's not that cute, then you should probably return it to the store!



Alexandra Martin is a professional writer from Southern California who grows vegetables, herbs, lots of aloe vera and one giant Boston fern in her balcony garden. She also grows dracaena, pothos and English ivy indoors. She loves traveling and birdwatching in addition to gardening.

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