The Plant Nanny

posted in: Plant Profiles, The Garden 2018 | 12

I love the challenge of recycling and reusing, and wine bottles is a favourite thing of mine to use in the garden.   It takes awhile to collect the blue bottles but the green is fairly common for wine bottles.  A feature in my garden is my bottle tree.

It has had a few different transformations over the years.  It started out on a lilac bush that just stopped growing so I trimmed it down and added the bottles and other things.  After awhile that trunk just snapped away, which was expected as it was a dead tree.

the bottle tree in winter at

It then got relocated to the fence garden and here it is one winter after some snow.

tea cup feeders at

I’ve used coloured bottles in the making of teacup feeders/planters.

While visiting Sidney, British Columbia we found a lovely store called Dig This and it was wonderful to browse this store in January and dream of gardening.  Of course I had to have something to bring home and I found a Plant Nanny, just the right size to fit into my suitcase.  And it would be another way of repurposing wine bottles.

the plant nanny at

It is a terra cotta spike that you push into the ground or planter and then insert a wine bottle full of water.  The water slowly seeps out through the terra cotta and keeps your plant from drying out.  Just perfect for when you are away from your garden for a few days.  I’ve been trying it out inside and it works really well.

I found out that they can be purchased at Lee Valley.  I waited till they had a free shipping event to order some more to use in the veggie garden this spring.  I can’t wait for gardening season. can you?

the plant nanny at

So now I’ve got a few different watering systems … water spikes, water bulbs, water dots, plant nannies and glass watering gloves.  I use the glass watering globes with my inside plants.  The water spikes have been well used as you can see from the faded ones that were once bright orange.  I use these in my tipsy pots, one poked into each pot lets the water get right down to the roots.  You can fit a 2 litre plastic bottle on them if you want. I had a set of water dots, great for putting at the bottom of a planter/pot as they soak up the water and release it over time.

various watering systems at

Last year I tried out some water spikes/bulbs from Lee Valley.  You sink them into the ground and fill them with water.  The water escapes out the holes in the bulb part and gets right to the root of the plant.  I use these beside my tomato plants to be sure the water gets right down to the roots.

the gardener side at

12 Responses

  1. Kea

    The blue bottles are especially pretty on your tree — and the bonus is you get the enjoyment of drinking good wine first. 🙂

    I’ve seen the glass water globes, but the plant nanny is new to me — what a great idea! I hope it works well for you this year, along with your other watering devices.

    Next weekend the clocks go ahead…Spring is on her way!

  2. Myrtle

    I love all your watering globes and dots,water spike/bulbs and, plant nannies. I have the glass bulbs, small & large, use them in house plants . I have enjoyed seeing all thes Linda.

  3. Margie

    This is the first time I’ve heard of the Plant Nanny. Loved the teapot totem pole.

  4. Elaine

    I was just thinking as I was reading here yes I have seen these as we here shop at Lee Valley for all kinds of things . I have never used them but have heard they are amazing . Hope they all work well for you and your gardening. Yes I am soo looking forward to getting back into the dirt of my gardens to cant wait .. Thanks for sharing , Have a good day !

  5. Lorrie

    The plant nanny would be a great thing here for potted plants in our dry summers. Sometimes our irrigation system needs a little boost, especially for certain plants. Your garden is a fun place!

  6. Maggie

    You have certainly found some ingenious ways to keep your plants well watered, the spikes seem like a very good idea especially for the herbs that I grow in my potager.
    Thanks for sharing your ideas and images with us at MM today.

  7. Wendy @ September Violets

    The blue bottles were worth waiting for! You have tried quite a variety of watering strategies. I might use one of these ideas this summer to save my plants when we are away. My built-in watering system doesn’t seem to work on a regular basis (my daughter ha ha!).

  8. Snap

    I’ve always wanted a bottle tree. Loved all the idea about recycling bottles. I like the idea of a plant nanny (love the name, too). Happy Monday!

  9. Lavender Dreamer

    The bottle tree sure looks neat with snow! Hope it’s nice there this week! What crazy weather it is in March! Hugs!

  10. Angie

    I am very familiar with the glass bulbs for indoor watering – I am enamored with this idea of recycling wine bottles to water outside – especially since in our area they do not recycle glass and it kills me to throw those bottles in the landfill. Thanks for the tips!

  11. Teresa

    I love the tree with all the colored bottles over the branches. Thank you for joining The Really Crafty Link Party this week.

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