Lara, Sophia and Tatiana love to help with the gardening, so when we were asked to review new Lechuza self-watering planters we knew they would get stuck in straight away. These planters are perfect for minimal care, or during the summer months when watering every day can become laborious and often inefficient. With a water reservoir at the bottom of each pot, followed by a layer of Lechuza PON plant substrate*, they only need occasional watering (once established). The use of the substrate also means that the pots are far lighter than those that contain just compost, so they are ideal for anywhere that should not take too much weight, e.g. window sills, roof terraces or balconies.
Sophia and I started outside with the Cascadino planter which has five side openings as well as a wide open top. You can also add elements to it to make it a tiered planter or even a hanging basket. Find all these ingenious ideas and planting guides on the Lechuza website.
We had been sent some lovely herbs to plant, but had also been given some early strawberry plants so my little Percy Thrower decided she wanted to plant some of each in the Cascadino. First we put in the layer of PON substrate* on top of the water reservoir, then topped with compost before adding our plants.
It was easy to feed the strawberry plants through the side openings, tucking in with compost as we did so. The black triangular piece you can see on the left below, with the water gauge sticking out, swivels across so you can water directly into the reservoir at the bottom of the pot.
After we had planted in the strawberries, we added herbs to the top of the planter, you can see the thyme and rosemary going in below.
And of course what was a 3 year old to do then but step back and admire her handiwork! Slightly proud of her efforts as you can see.
We had also been sent three of the smaller Mini-Deltini pots to use indoors, each of which also came with its own supply of PON substrate*. The Deltini are available in an array of colours to suit all decors and they are very attractive pots, with a high gloss finish. We have sited ours on the bathroom window sill out of kitty reach, and they look rather lovely there.
Each pot has an inner planter below which sits the water reservoir, and again there is a water level indicator which sits proud of the top of the pot.
The idea with the Deltini is to just use the PON and water that as it has water retaining qualities and fertiliser added (see below). We planted three hyacinths, but will change those when they finish flowering. I have seen small orchids planted in Deltini on the Lechuza website and they look lovely. Think we'll go for that next.
Sophia did find the Deltini a bit more difficult to pot up and left it to me in the end. I think it was not having the manual dexterity yet to manoeuvre bag, pot and plant all at the same time. So I would recommend the bigger Lechuza planters for children to use, but the Deltini range for looking gorgeous with house plants.
* LECHUZA-PON is a structurally stable, inorganic plant substrate that has optimum properties for plants. It stores nutrients and releases them to the plant as needed, protects pH levels, and stores water up to 40 percent by volume while providing optimum air-filled porosity. LECHUZA-PON is made from pumice, zeolites and lava, and is enriched at the factory with a depot fertiliser which provides your plant with sufficient nutrients for up to 12 months.