Rooting plants in water and glass

The mess-free, stress-free houseplant trend

If you love the idea of a home full of houseplants but you’re less keen on the idea of getting your hands dirty – or you can’t be trusted to keep up with all that tending and watering – this is the gardening trend for you: hydroponics.


What is hydroponics?

Hydroponics is the process of growing plants in water (or sand or gravel) – but without soil. It’s simple: if you take a cutting of certain plants at just the right point, they will sprout roots as soon as you pop them in a vase of water.

Which plants work best?

This is an ideal project for a kitchen windowsill herb garden, as most common herbs, such as basil, rosemary, lavender and sage, all grow fast in water and will sprout new leaves on a daily basis.

Other water-babies include English ivy (a great trailing plant for a book shelf), philodendron (with its thick, glossy foliage), coleus and begonias (for a burst of colour, even in winter).

How to root your plant in water

  1. Take your cutting: Cut your plant just below a leaf (at the leaf node), as this is where the plant’s rooting hormone is found.
  2. Choose your water: Tap water won’t do for this. Instead, use bottled spring water, which is packed with minerals that will help your plant to grow.
  3. Fill your vase: Half-fill your vase with water (a bottle-shaped vase with a narrow neck will help to hold your plant in place).

Style it up

This gardening method is not only self-sustaining, and as easy as one, two, three – it looks super-stylish, too. Clear glass bottles look elegant in any space and make a focal point of the natural beauty of your plant’s roots.

Opt for a single vase on a desk, dressing table or bedside table – or create a dining table centrepiece or a statement end table with a whole cluster of glass vases in contrasting shapes and sizes.

Find out how you can build your very own hydroponic garden here