how to set up a self-watering plant straw system 

Plant Moderator

Let’s be honest: watering plants can feel a bit like a chore sometimes. We love our plant babies, but life just gets in the way.  

But do not fear – plant straws are here. This simple, easy to install self-watering system is your key to plant-watering freedom. So, whether you forget to water your plants, or you are planning a getaway and want to make sure yours are taken care of, then this post is for you.

Thirst things first: what are plant straws? 

Plant straws are made using two simple things : a long cotton cord,  and a thin metal tube. One end of the cord is buried in the soil of a plant, while the other end lies in a vessel of water. The cord draws out moisture from the vessel and releases it into a plant’s soil. The thin metal tube, which the cord is strung through, keeps the cord stable – and makes the entire system look chic. So, expect LOTS of compliments pouring in once you have set up your plant straw. 

How do plant straws work?  

If you are shaking your head furiously and thinking, “this can’t be real,” you are not alone. The idea of a cotton cord watering your plants can seem too good to be true. But don’t click away just yet! There’s a scientific explanation to how all this works.  

The cord inside the metal tube wants to stay evenly moist, so it constantly draws out water from the vessel you placed it in. Meanwhile, your soil instinctively absorbs moisture from the wet cord when it needs a dose of hydration.  

Ready? Let’s Gro. 

here’s what you need to get started: 

  • A metal plant tube of your choice 
  • A cotton cord that is a several inches longer than your tube 
  • A glass vessel 
  • And – obviously – water! 

step one. measure twice, cut once.

Start by measuring how much of the cotton cord and tube you need. Be sure to leave a few inches that can sit in your plant as well as in the water of your vessel.

lets gro #plantproject

step two. H2O is the way to go

Next up, wet your cotton cord in water until it is fully soaked. Then, squeeze out the excess.  

step three. show us your roots

Feed your cord through the tube. Take one end of your cord and push it several inches below the soil’s surface. Depending on how much water your plant needs, you might want to bury more of your cord within.  

step four. just add water

Feed what is left of your cord through your metal tube. Then, fill up a glass vessel with water, and place the remaining end of the cord in it. 

step five. sip sip, hooray

Cheers to crossing “water my plants” off your to-do list for good! Now that you have set up your self-watering plant straw system, the only time you will need to think about watering your plants is when it’s time to feed them, or when you need to refill your vessel.  

Do your plants actually need a straw? 

The answer: it depends. The thirstier your plant is, the more we recommend you invest in a plant straw! For example, if you have got a Monstera Deliciosa or Monstera Adansonii, a plant straw could really benefit their extra hydration needs.  

Got more questions about plant straws? Or just want to chat? Come hang out with us and our plant experts in the Plant Chat. 



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