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Why you should grow your plants in water

As a plant lover, you have probably tried growing different plants in soil. Have you considered growing your plants in water instead? If you struggle with correct watering of your plants, or with pest issues, read on. In this article, we’ll tell you all about growing plants in water; how to do it, and why it’s easier than in soil.

So, which indoor plants can grow in water?

Technically, all indoor plants can grow in water. However, the growth of their roots can determine if the plants stay upright in the jar or if they’ll thrive long term in water.

Plants that generally grow well in water are Philodendrons, English ivys, Pothos’, Begonias, Arrowheads, and Hoyas, but also many other plants. To create your urban jungle, simply nip the stem of the plant you want to grow and place it on our Botanopia Propagation Plate in water to get you started! Place the plant in a spot with bright indirect light and wait for the magic to happen.

These plants can continue to thrive in water for a long time, as long as they get the right nourishment. Once your cutting has grown roots, our water-soluble Plant food contains all the nutrients your plant needs to stimulate growth.

If you chose a different type of fertilizer, be careful. Synthetic fertilizers can easily burn the roots. Organic types will always be safer (and better for the planet).

Yellow Flower bulbs growing with their roots in water on a germination plate
Finally succeed in growing your avocado pit with our easy instructions and our germination plates.
Yes, it's possible to grow cactus and succulents in water, with the use of our germination plate. The cactus stays safe and dry on the top, and the roots grow in the water.

Here are some of the plants you can grow in water using only a germination plate and a glass

Watch this 1-minute video to discover all the different plants that you can grow in water with the germination and propagation plate.

So what are the advantages of growing plants in water?

Easy maintenance

You’re sitting in a meeting, and you think, ‘when’s the last time I watered my plants?’ Does this sound familiar? Or perhaps you’re over-enthusiastic and end up drowning your plants instead.

Planting in water saves you the hassle of overwatering or underwatering your plants. You can simply check the water level and fill it up as needed. The roots drink as much as they need.

Did you know that water roots are actually a different type than soil roots? They’re usually a pristine white and are perfectly suited to absorb nutrients from water.

A beautiful display

There’s a certain je ne sais quoi about the simplicity of growing plants in water, placed in clear glasses, beautiful vases, or even trendy test tubes. You can elevate a drab space with plant cuttings to achieve Pinterest-worthy rooms. Much better than watching grass grow, you can watch your roots grow.

Preventing pests and diseases

Pesky pests always seem to find their way to our plants, much to the sorrow of every plant parent. These pests lay eggs in the soil of potted plants, and their larvae tend to feed on the soil fungi. So by eliminating the soil, you get rid of the pests! This makes water a hassle-free option, that’s very easy to implement. You’ll never need to use pesticides again.

Germinating the seed inside a mango pit
Lychee pits are easy to grow and turn into beautiful little plants in your kitchen. Elevate them above the water on our germination plate size S.
Beautiful hyacinth in bloom with the roots growing in water on our germination plate.

Takes less space

Plants growing in water maximize the spaces they are in and are perfect for people with limited spaces or no gardens. Since the plant roots don’t have to spread far in the soil for nutrients and moisture, the plant is able to grow in a smaller space. This especially comes in handy if you are always looking to propagate new plant cuttings from your growing plants.

Conserves water

Growing plants in water use a third of the water required if they were growing in soil. Since the plants are limited to only the water they have in a jar, you don’t have to keep watering them. Your plant will grow best if the water is well oxygenated. The roots need plenty of oxygen to thrive. Refresh the water at least weekly for best results. If you want to grow very large plants in water, you can also use a bubbler (the type used for aquariums), to keep the water well oxygenated without having to refresh it.

Observe growth

You may be curious to observe the growth of plant roots and follow the germination process. Growing plants in water lets you watch the show through the clear jars. This can also be a fun DIY activity for children, to learn how to grow plants and see the growth in real-time. It’s a bit like an iceberg, there’s as much going on under the water surface as above, and now you get to see it.

What kind of containers are best?

Anything water-tight will work, but if you want to see the beautiful roots, go for something transparent! This is the perfect project to upcycle existing containers: jars, glasses, pots, even plastic bottles or vases. Have fun and experiment! If you don’t have any options at home, a trip to the thrift shop is sure to deliver lots of beautiful containers.

What about algae growing in the water?

If you have plants growing in water and getting plenty of sunlight, you might notice green deposits on the roots and container. That’s algae! Nothing to worry about, it’s a sign that you’re providing a healthy environment for all kinds of plants to grow. You can simply rinse them out, but they are very likely to grow again. If you want to get rid of the algae, you can try adding a couple of drops of hydrogen peroxide to the glass.

Did you successfully grow some cuttings?

What’s your next challenge? Here’s lots of ideas for other plants and seeds to try next. Are your plants successfully rooting? Tag us on Instagram @botanopia_ to share the growth.

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