How to Bottom Water Your Plants + Houseplants that Love Bottom Watering

Ralph Astley is a retired gardener from Philadelphia who specializes in outdoor plants and trees. With years of hands-on experience, Ralph not only cares for a diverse range of outdoor flora but also shares his extensive knowledge through well-written articles and social media posts. A trusted authority in arboriculture, he's committed to helping the community grow healthier, more robust gardens.
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Learn everything about How to Bottom Water Your Plants at home the right way and keep your plants healthy without over-saturating them!

How to Bottom Water Your Plants

As every plant’s watering needs are different, it is essential that you water them right to ensure they stay healthy. Here are all the details on How to Bottom Water Your Plants at Home the Right Way without wetting the foliage!

Check out the awesome benefits of bottom watering your plants here

What is Bottom Watering?

Bottom watering is a process in which you place the pots in a sink or tub that contains 2-3 inches of water for 10-12 minutes. The bottom holes in the pot allow the water to soak into the soil without over-saturating it.

Bottom Watering Plants in Home

  • This process is ideal for small to medium-sized plants that can be moved easily.
  • Check the soil moisture with fingers before watering to ascertain whether the plants need watering or not.
  • Take a tray that can easily accommodate the pot. You can also do this in your sink or tub. Just make sure the water level is high enough to submerge the bottom 2-3 inches of the pot; not more than that.
  • Allow the indoor potted plants to sit in the water for 10-20 minutes.

Learn how to water houseplants here

Houseplants that Love Bottom Watering

1. African Violets


Botanical Name: Saintpaulia

When it comes to watering, African violets are quite finicky as they dislike water on the leaves and hate completely dry soil. They prefer watering the plant from the base when the soil starts to appear less moist.

2. Snake Plant

How to Bottom Water Your Plants 2

Botanical Name: Sanseveria trifaciata

Snake plant does not like overwatering and getting its foliage wet as it results in spots too. Bottom watering works really well for them. Soak small potted snake plants in a tub or sink for a few minutes.

Quick Tip: Use a moisture meter to keep a close tab on the water level in the pot.

3. Peace Lily

How to Bottom Water Your Plants 2

Botanical Name: Spathiphyllum wallisii

Bottom watering also works well for a peace lily because it loves evenly moist soil. If you constantly water the plant from the top, it can cause black spots on the leaves.

4. Pussy Ears

Botanical Name: Cyanotis somaliensis

The hairy foliage of this plant hates water, so bottom watering is the best way to make sure it stays hydrated without getting its foliage wet.

5. Jade Plant

How to Bottom Water Your Plants 3

Botanical Name: Crassula ovata

If you want to grow jade plant bushier and healthier, then avoid overhead watering and do not keep the soil moist. You can try occasional bottom watering for potted jade plants.

Fact: Many succulents dislike overwatering, and bottom watering is the best technique to keep them hydrated without harming the health.

6. Pothos


Botanical Name: Epipremnum aureum

Bottom watering allows the plant to absorb all the moisture it needs without worrying about getting it overwatered. Also, it helps to keep its glossy foliage spot-free.

7. Philodendron

How to Bottom Water Your Plants 4

Botanical Name: Philodendron

If you are not careful with philodendron watering, then the foliage may become yellow or green. Bottom watering helps to keep them thriving without any fuss and spot-free!

8. Calathea and Prayer Plant

How to Bottom Water Your Plants 5

Botanical Name: Calathea / Maranta leuconeura

Prayer plants like to be in soil that’s neither too wet nor too dry. Bottom watering will help you strike that right balance. Just make sure to water it only when the topsoil feels a little dry to touch.

9. Purple Oxalis


Botanical Name: Oxalis triangularis

This gorgeous indoor plant, with vibrant purple leaves, is a great contender for bottom watering as it will help you to keep its foliage dry and spot-free!

Important Point to Consider

As the plants absorb water from the drainage holes in the bottom watering method, the topsoil might not get moist. In such a case, poking a finger in the pot to check moisture level will not work. The best way to keep track of the water level is to use a moisture meter to ensure the plants stay well hydrated.


Check out our article 64 Awesome Pictures of the Best Small Houseplants here

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