Do you have a green thumb but don’t have the space to garden? Have no fear! You can grow potted plants in water beads. This is a great way to keep your plants healthy and happy while taking up very little space.
In this blog post, we will discuss how to grow potted plants in water beads. We will also provide some tips on how to care for your plants using this method.
How to Grow Potted Plants in Water Beads?
Made from a water-absorbing polymer, water beads are an excellent way to provide your plants with the hydration they need. This way you don’t need to worry about constantly watering your plants. Plus, they look awesome!
To get started, you will need:
- Water beads (I use these ones from Amazon)
- A container for your water beads (a clear vase or jar works well)
- Potted plants
Once you have gathered your supplies, you are ready to get started:
- Fill your container with water beads. You will want to use enough beads to completely cover the bottom of your container
- Remove your plant from its current container and clean the roots
- Place your potted plant in the center of the container. Gently press down on the plant to ensure that it is secure
- Fill the remainder of the container with water beads, up to the rim of your pot
- Allow the water beads to soak up water for several hours. You will know they are fully hydrated when they have doubled in size and are soft to the touch
- After the beads have soaked up water, place your container in a sunny spot
- Your potted plant will now have everything it needs to grow and thrive! Be sure to check on your plant regularly, and add more water to the beads as needed
That’s it! Now you know how to grow potted plants in water beads. Give it a try and see how easy and fun it is! For extra information, I will now go through these steps in further detail…
1. Hydrate Your Beads
The first step is to hydrate your beads. As they’re made of dry granules, the beads instantly expand when they come into contact with water. You’ll want to use enough beads to completely cover the bottom of your container.
You will only know how many beads you need once you’ve added water. So, it’s best to start with a small amount and add more if needed. These beads grow A LOT bigger than you may think.
Here’s a trick – add some water-soluble fertilizer to the water before adding the beads. This way, your plants will get a little nutrition boost from the start!
Allow the beads to soak for a few hours before moving on to the next step. You’ll know they’re ready when they’re much bigger and softer to the touch.
2. Prepare Your Plant
Now it’s time to add your plants! Start by removing your plant from its current container and cleaning the roots. If the roots are pot-bound (wrapped tightly around the inside of the container), gently loosen them before planting.
You may need to use a hose to rinse off all the dirt. Be sure to remove any dead leaves or stems as well. While cleaning the roots is important, try to do it carefully so you don’t damage the plant.
3. Place Your Plant in the Beads
Start by filling the bottom of your container with water beads. Then, place your potted plant in the center of the container and gently press down to ensure that it’s secure. If you’re using a clear container, you can use colored beads for a fun and unique look!
Fill the remainder of the container with water beads, up to the rim of your pot. This will keep everything secure and in place.
How Long Do Water Beads Last in a Pot?
Water beads can last for years when properly cared for. However, you will need to add water to the beads every so often to keep them hydrated. If the beads start to shrink, simply add more water and they will grow back to their original size.
I tend to replace my water beads every two years or so, just to be on the safe side. But, if you take good care of them, there’s no reason why they can’t last for much longer.
Can Water Beads Be Mixed with Soil?
Yes, water beads can be mixed with soil. In fact, they were designed to be used in gardens! They will slowly release water into the soil, which can be helpful during periods of drought.
Beads effectively hold onto nutrients. This means that, when mixed with soil, they can help fertilize your plants. No longer will nutrients just flow away when you water your plants!
The beads also help with aeration and drainage as they swell and shrink – this creates tiny pockets of air in the soil that allows your plants to breathe. No longer will soil become compacted and suffocate your plants.
Just be sure to use a high-quality soil mix. I like to use an organic potting mix that already has nutrients in it. This way, I know my plants are getting everything they need to grow and thrive.
What Plants Grow Well in Water Beads?
There are certain plants that grow better in water beads than others. Plants with shallow roots work best, as they don’t need a lot of space to grow. Some examples of plants that do well in water beads are:
- African Violets
- English Ivy
- Wandering Jew
- Arrowhead Vine
- Peace Lily
Now that you know how to grow potted plants in water beads, give it a try! I think you’ll be surprised at how easy it is – and how well your plants will do. Plus, it’s a fun way to add a little flair to your home dÃ©cor.
What Water Beads Should I Use?
There are a variety of water beads available on the market. There are clear crystal beads, as well as colored beads. You can even find scented beads!
I love using the colored beads (Amazon link) using clear pots – it creates a really fun and unique look. However, you can use any type of bead you like. Just make sure they’re from a reputable seller with solid feedback.
How Do You Dispose of Water Beads?
It’s important to dispose of water beads properly. While they’re not particularly harmful to the environment, they can clog drains and cause problems for sewage systems.
The best way to dispose of water beads is to simply let them dry out. Once they’re dry, you can add them to your compost bin or let them degrade in your garden. The beads will slowly break down over time and disappear.
In conclusion, water beads are a great way to grow potted plants. They’re easy to use, last for years, and can help your plants thrive. Just be sure to dispose of them properly when you’re done.
Oh, and be sure to use a clear container and colorful beads for a fun and unique look! Have you ever grown potted plants in water beads? What was your experience? Let me know in the comments below! Thanks for reading.
Tim is an avid gardener from the UK. He was the founder of PlantCarer.com from 2021 to Sep 2023. He sold PlantCarer.com to Aaron. He has since started his own business called Seed To Supper, which provides new gardeners all the materials you need in a box (pots, seeds, compost and instructions) to grow your own delicious and nutritious vegetables and herbs from start to finish – no garden required.