Frequently Asked Questions

How does the water flow through the stake if there are no holes?

No drainage holes are necessary as terracotta is a naturally porous material, so water is slowly drawn through the stake and into the soil. More information on how Plant Nannies work.

How long do Plant Nanny stakes last?

As long as they are properly cared for, you should get years of use from your Plant Nanny watering stakes.

  • Forcing the stake too firmly into the soil may cause it to crack or break, so use a gentle touch when inserting the stake.  Always insert the stake into moist soil first before you insert or attach the wine bottle, plastic bottle or glass globe.
  • Do not let it freeze.  If you are using the stakes outdoors and live in a colder climate with freezing temperatures through the winter, your stakes may not survive the winter in the ground.  We suggest that as you ‘put your garden to bed’ for the winter, you remove your stakes from the ground, gently wash and rinse them and store them for use next season.

For how long will they water my plant?

Watering times depend on many factors: the size of the plant and its water requirements, the type of soil, size of the reservoir, as well as the temperature and humidity level of the environment. It is difficult to predict for sure, but generally you can count on 5-7 days for a 12 oz. reservoir, and longer (up to two weeks) for the larger sizes.

What if my plant doesn’t need much water?

If your plant does not need a lot of water, or you are concerned about over-watering, you can begin by not inserting the stake all the way into the soil.  By leaving the top one third of the stake exposed and out of the soil, you are reducing the stake’s contact with the soil, therefore lessening the amount of water drawn out from the stake. If you feel your plant is a little particular, you could also insert the stake further away from the center of the plant’s root system.

Can I use Plant Nanny Products for cacti & succulents?

You can, but these plants generally require less water; therefore, they benefit from the stake not being inserted fully into the soil. This reduces the contact area with the stake and soil, therefore reducing the amount of water it is receiving over time.

Why do some plastic bottles not work with my Recycle a Bottle adapter?

Most soft drink and water bottles will work, but in our experience the ones to avoid are the very thin-walled bottles with shorter than usual threaded necks. For example, those bottles you might buy in bulk that use less plastic. We recommend using the following brands of plastic water bottles: Dasani, Evian, Smart Water, Fiji or Coke and Pepsi products.

Can I use fertilizer in my Plant Nanny stake?

You can use fertilizers, but please be aware that most, if not all, contain water-soluble salts. These salts can accumulate inside your Plant Nanny stake causing it to work less effectively over time.

What is the best way to clean the Plant Nanny glass globes?

After prolonged use and exposure to sunlight, algae may form inside the globe, or the globe may look cloudy. The good news is it’s easy to clean them, and there are two different approaches that work equally well:

  • Sand Method: Pour about two tablespoons of fine sand into the globe and fill the globe about 1/4 full with tap water.  Place your thumb or finger over the globe’s opening and shake vigorously for 30-60 seconds. Pour the water and sand out anywhere safe (avoid putting sand down the sink drain). Repeat as needed until the globe is clean.  Rinse well to remove any final particles of sand.  Through this process, the sand particles are gently rubbing against the inside of the glass globe and working away the algae or other dirt/grime.
  • Bleach Method: Pour about two tablespoons of bleach into the globe and fill the globe with tap water.  Set the globe stem side up in your sink drain or another supporting receptacle to keep it upright and stationary.  Let sit for 5-10 minutes.  Empty the bleach/water mix and rinse well again to ensure all traces of bleach have been removed.

More tips about using Plant Nanny products