A couple of days ago I was pondering the problem of container plants drying out and wanted an inexpensive solution to ensuring houseplants were adequately watered when we are away. Houseplants are as problematic if we are gone for 2 or 3 days but outdoor container plants can easily become too dry in the period of a few hours. I recently wrote about a gravity fed watering system that I am planning on setting up for this year's garden experiment. While this system has a lot of potential for containers grouped together as in patio or balcony gardening it would be a bit more difficult to expand to using with containers spread a distance from each other and modifications would need to be made for indoor usage. So I've been looking at other options while tweaking the gravity fed watering system design for indoor usage as well.
I know watering globes and clay watering spikes have been available for quite some time. I didn't use them mainly because there wasn't a lot of need. Usually the kids check our house and water plants when we are away. I found watering globes at the dollar store for $2 each and decided they would be a good idea especially in the sunporch where plants tend to dry out quicker than those in the house. I bought 2 of them to try. The dollar store watering globes came in at just under half the price of those sold at Canadian tire.
A watering globe is made of hand-blown glass. It provides a bit of a decorative element to potted plants while ensuring they do not dry out. They are quite easy to use buy simply filling then inverting and inserting the stem into the soil where the water will be released into the soil via gravity and osmosis. The size I bought will keep a plant watered for up to 2 weeks. I think these watering globes will be wonderful for use indoors and in the sunporch. I'm a bit concerned over direct sun exposure for outdoor potted plants where the water could heat in the reservoir to the point of being too hot for the plant. Since the watering globe is made of glass it is a bit more fragile than other watering methods as well so this won't be an option I use much outdoors other than protected areas.