How to Bottom Water Plants effectively? (The perfect way)

How to Bottom Water Plants effectively? Bottom watering is all about watering the potted plants in a much-affected way, using the trick of reverse watering. Bottom watering is all about placing your potted plant or pot onto the tray that is filled with water and letting the root do all the work and drink water according to the need of the plant as well as itself. By this, we mean that normal watering includes you watering them onto the soil which has a low chance to get deep into the soil or into the roots more effectively.

The water many times can pass over the soil and spill around the pot. The pots usually have holes in the bottom, and roots play a major role in absorbing the water. When you place the pot into the tray of water, the roots absorb the water with the capillary action and get deeply hydrated which then via diffusion and osmosis reaches above the height of the plants.

Though the transpiration pull is another process involved in pulling the water upwards. Bottom watering has many benefits and a few plants like an African violet, snake plants can sustain well with bottom watering. Read the whole guide to know more about how to bottom water plants.

How to Bottom Water Plants effectively?

Here are the steps to bottom water preparation and bottom watering the plants 

STEP 1: 

The very first step should be looking at the soil of the pot, which will indicate whether the plant ended up watered or not according to the level of dryness or the top inch of soil dryness. 

STEP 2: 

Then take a container, tray, or bathtub. Water that needs to be added to the container depends on the pot size, if the pot size is large, the water added to the container should be more.

For 7-8 inches of the pot, 1.5 inches to 2 inches of water is good. 

STEP 3: 

Make sure the pots have a good amount of holes, then place the pot in the middle of the container with water.

The bottom surface should be immersed in the water, if not add water to the soil so the weight is increased and they get dipped in water. 

STEP 4: 

Now the absorption will be seen but also depends on the size of the pot, holes, and the potting mix. As you might need to add fertilizer if the plant needs supplements.

Let the pot stay in water for 15-20 minutes. You need to add some more water if the water level has decreased by absorption. But don’t add excess water as you might need to remove or drain it. 

How long to leave plants in water when bottom watering?

Bottom water plants are not too tough a dot too simple, but just a feasible task that you can do by yourself, but how long do you need to leave the plants in the container so that the plants don’t get damaged?

The pot in the tray or sink with water while bottom watering needs to be placed within 15 minutes minimum for the regular size pot which can be more in the case of larger pots.

Can you overwater by bottom watering

The plant can get easily overwatered for bottom water plants, which can be due to the plant sitting in water for too long. The other reason for the overwatered plant in bottom watering can be due to excess water in the container. 

You need to water the plants after 3-4 days. The daily bottom catering is bad for plants. Before the plant is watered let the soil get dry and root transfer the water to the whole length of the plant. 

Benefits of bottom watering 

As we mentioned above there are a lot of benefits of bottom watering. 

  • If you bottom water plants in the pots, the root develops healthily and grows strong. Many plants cannot withstand wet leaves like an African violet, bottom watering is highly beneficial for such plants.
  • Watering the parsley plants from above can leave many spots of dryness, giving bottom watering to the potted plants letting the water spread thoroughly and get soaked in a better way.
  • In normal water, the plant has a high chance to get overwatered or underwatered. But in bottom watering, there is a very low risk of the plant getting inverted as the roots are playing the main role in absorbing the water according to the plant’s need and soil saturation.
  • The silent peaceful way of watering is bottom water plants where you enjoy the level of water in the tray getting down whereas normal watering includes much slashing, spilling, and creating mess around. The leaves are more prone to getting wet in normal watering than the bottom watering.
  • Just imagine placing the pot right in the middle of the water is such an easy task as the root does all the watering and sends the parts that the normal watering.
  • My experience is that I have shaky hands, so the water gets uncontrolled sometimes which harms plants as well. Bottom watering doesn’t create a safe situation for the plants. 

Bottom watering large plants 

The size of the plant is really important to consider while bottom watering the plants. If the plant is larger the size of the pot in most cases will be large as well. Though in a few cases the large plants can be grown in small pots but not for a long time. More water is needed for the large plants in the container or sink. 

Bottom watering overnight

The plants if bottom watered should not stay soaked in water for such a long time as overnight. With long exposure to the tap water in the sink, there can be nutrient deposition and salt coagulation on the soil surface and the pots.

So we can say these are the cons of bottom watering. You need to water them on the soil so that the solution is washed off from the lower side and then bottom water plants them again when the soil gets dry. 

Wrapping up the context 

We hope you have found this article useful in bottom-watering plants. We have let you know some effective ways by which you should bottom water your plants without harming or overdoing them. By now, you have understood that some plants get healthy when you water them like snake plants, African violet, etc. So why not benefit the plants and root system with the bottom watering? Stay connected.  


1. Can I water all my plants?

You can simply bottom water all types of plants. The method should be done consciously with the proper soil, and water amount, and looking at the size of the pot. 

2. How do you know if bottom watering is working?

The nonworking of the bottom watering can be due to the soil not getting moist enough and the soil staying too tight. The level of the water should be parallel to the ground and not slant, so the soil absorbs much of the water uniformly and the same goes for roots.

To make the bottom watering work, keep all these things in mind and notice that the water level in the tray reduces while the pot is in water.

3. Do bottom-watering plants work?

Bottom watering is an effective method of watering plants. I believe it is the smart way to water them. The roots will be seen as stronger and much more hydrated and healthy after bottom watering. 

Becky Decker

Becky Decker, our esteemed Editor-in-Chief, is a passionate gardener with years of experience in the world of horticulture. With her guidance, aims to be your trusted companion on your gardening journey. Featured In   Becky Decker’s expertise and gardening wisdom have been recognized and featured in various prominent publications, including: Yahoonews  Experience & Background   Becky Decker’s love for gardening has been a lifelong journey. She has honed her skills through countless seasons of planting, nurturing, and harvesting a wide variety of plants, flowers, and vegetables. Her deep-rooted knowledge is complemented by her Bachelor’s degree in Horticulture from the University of Green Valley.   Prior to leading, Becky worked as a garden consultant, helping countless individuals turn their outdoor spaces into vibrant, thriving gardens. Her experience spans over a decade, making her a trusted authority in the gardening community.   The Birth of   Inspired by her passion for gardening and her desire to share her expertise with a wider audience, Becky Decker launched in 2021. This platform serves as a hub for gardening enthusiasts of all levels, from beginners to seasoned pros.   At, we are committed to providing you with comprehensive guides, expert advice, and hands-on tips to help you achieve success in your gardening endeavors. Whether you have a small balcony garden or a sprawling backyard paradise, we have the information you need to make your garden flourish.   Our Mission is more than just a gardening website; it’s a community of gardeners who share a common love for nurturing the Earth. Our mission is to empower you with the knowledge and resources to create beautiful, sustainable gardens that bring joy and tranquility to your life.   Join Us on This Green Journey   We invite you to explore and embark on your gardening journey with us. Whether you’re seeking advice on planting techniques, pest control, landscaping ideas, or the latest gardening trends, you’ll find it all right here.   Connect with us, ask questions, and share your gardening stories. Together, we’ll cultivate a thriving community of gardeners and help each other make the world a greener, more beautiful place.   Let’s dig in and grow together at, where gardening dreams bloom!

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