Product review: Plant Nanny Watering Stakes

When you go out of town, do you fret over how your houseplants will fare while you're gone? I sure do (much to my husband's dismay!) but now I have a product that has put my mind at ease.

It's called the Plant Nanny Watering Stake and it works great. There are two types:

1) One has a large terracotta stake that you poke into the potting soil and then take a recycled wine bottle, fill it with water and place it upside-down into the terracotta stake.

2) The other also features a terracotta stake but includes a PVC adapter that fits onto soda or water bottles.

What a great way to water your plants using recycled glass or plastic bottles!

The way it works is that the water slowly drips, as needed, into the potting soil where the roots are, rather than on the surface where it can evaporate.

We recently were out of town for a week and I was worried about how my Flowering Maple (Abutilon) would do because the potting soil dries out so quickly. Even if I had really drenched the potting soil before we left, I'm certain the plant would have been shriveled up by the time we returned.

Then I remembered the Plant Nanny watering stake sample I received during last year's Garden Writers Association's Symposium. My problem was solved! I used an empty soda bottle with the PVC adapter and it worked perfectly. The photo to the left was taken when we got back from our trip and, as you can see, the Flowering Maple is NOT shriveled up. It actually looks quite happy as a matter of fact, and only used a quarter of the water in the bottle.

It was definitely a more efficient way to water the plant. Think of how useful this would be if you live in an area where there are water-use restrictions, although we should all be looking for ways to conserve water whether we're experiencing a drought or not, right?

I was going to say you can learn more about them and order your own Plant Nanny by going to, but I see their website is currently under construction. However, you can contact them at (603) 727-9788 and I do see that they can be ordered through, and

The Plant Nanny folks have a Facebook page which is located at