Have you ever been to a thrift store and found the perfect vintage vessel for one of your plants but it doesn’t have drainage? Did you find an amazing hand made pot on Etsy…no drainage?! I can help you with that! Today you are going to learn How to Drill Drainage Holes for Houseplants. It’s not hard at all and requires very few items.
Let’s talk about drainage for a minute. I am a FIRM believer that you should have drainage holes for all your plants. I don’t know if it’s because I live in an area where it’s wet and moist most of the year but if I don’t have drainage holes for my houseplants then they WILL rot. It’s gross, I don’t like it and I feel bad! If the water can’t drain, then you run the risk of root rot which can lead to fungus gnats and everything just goes down hill from there. Before you tell me that I should just put rocks in the bottom of my pot before the soil…I’ve done that! It doesn’t work (for me). I’ve had no success doing that! Which leads us back to the reason you’re here. Let’s learn How to Drill Drainage Holes For Houseplants!
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You will need
- A vessel in need of drainage (terracotta, stoneware, ceramic, clay, plastic, etc.)
- A hole saw (I used this one here) There are different sizes pictured at the very end of this post to make it easy for you!
- A drill (This is the one I have)
- A cup of water
- Scrap cardboard
Note: I’ve done this many times with different materials. I have never had a pot break (while drilling) but that doesn’t mean it can’t happen! Please do not try this with anything that may be expensive, or sentimental or that you can’t risk breaking. In addition, read the directions on the hole saw package to see which materials they suggest using/not using. It’s always a good idea to wear safety goggles!
Let’s get started
Place some cardboard on a hard surface (like back deck or cement, not your dining room table) and flip your vessel so the bottom is facing up. Poor a small amount of water in the area where you will drill the hole. The area needs to stay wet the whole time. Let sit for a minute. Attach the hole saw bit to your drill.
You may need someone to hold the vessel for you but you can probably do it on your own, just be careful. IMPORTANT Start the drill before you actually touch the drill bit to the vessel. Get it up to a medium speed. Once it’s at a medium speed slowly start to drill straight down (my husband says “perpendicular”…whatever). Once the drill has made an indent, slowly rock the drill back and forth and side and side. This will help the process.
Once the drill is about half way through, you can stop and add some more water if you feel like your area is getting dry. Continue with your drill at medium speed until it breaks through the other side (is that song stuck in your head now? You’re welcome!) At the very end, it will break through pretty quickly so make sure your hard surface is not something you care about, the drill might hit it. And can I just toot my own horn for a minute? I’m drilling with my right hand and photographing with my left. Now that’s talent folks…or stupidity…whatever it’s cool!
That’s it! Pretty simple, right? If you’re anything like me, you’re going to wander around town looking for anything you can drill holes in. Haha! But seriously, your plants will thank you! Another fun thing is drilling three holes in the top sides of pots, tying some jute through the holes and making a hanging pot!
Now find a new plant for your new pot! I’m planting this Monstera Siltepecana. It’s the newest Monstera in my collection. See more on my Instagram!
Thanks for being here. I hope you have a great day!
Special thanks to Bryson Mosley for giving me the idea to drill drainage holes in the first place! From one plant nerd to another, I can’t thank you enough! I’ve saved so much money on thrifting pots AND probably saved a lot of plants from a rotting death too!
If you don’t already follow him on IG, you should! He has a collection of plants to die for! @brysonjmosley