I recently purchased a package of diapers.
No, I’m not pregnant, and, no, they weren’t for a baby shower.
In fact, they weren’t for a baby at all. They were for my sickly houseplants.
Several months ago, I stumbled across this video demonstrating the miracles of diaper gel in planting. The results were amazing–plants grew bigger and were more lush in the diaper-amended soil. I was eager to try out the trick on my own pathetic houseplants. I don’t usually have a black thumb, but for some reason my philodendrons, spider plants and Pothos plants (in other words, hard to kill plants) were just not thriving. In fact, they had all the typical traits of an unhealthy plant:
- Pale, limp leaves
- Multiple brown and yellow leaves
- Dry, cracking, fast-draining soil
- Stunted growth
All of this changed after I used the diaper trick. Now I barely water my houseplants twice a month and they are greener and healthier than ever!
Does the greenery in your home need a boost? Then keep reading…
The Potting Soil Diaper Trick
You will need:
- 1 package of unused diapers (any size or variety)
- Potting soil
- Potted plant or flower of your choice (except succulents)
- Watering can
- 1 heavy,tip-proof bowl
- 1 large mixing container
Step 1: Carefully remove plant from pot.
Gently loosen the soil around the root ball with a trowel. Carefully lift the entire plant and roots out of the pot, using your fingers to push off the excess soil around the roots. To keep the roots from drying out while you work, drape the plant over a large, tip-proof bowl full of water and place the roots in the water.
If you discover the plant to be root-bound, gently uncoil and prune any thick, tough, choking roots.
Step 2: Thoroughly saturate diaper with water.
Open up a fresh diaper and hold it under running water until completely saturated. Next, cut or tear open the cotton lining to reveal the gel inside.
Step 3: Mix the diaper gel into the potting soil
To keep from making an absolute mess, empty the potting soil from your plant pot into a separate container. Next, add all of the gel from one diaper to the pot.
Pour in a little water if the potting soil is too dry and with your hands, mix the soil up good until the gel is completely combined.
Here is how my depleted potting soil looked after I applied the diaper trick:
Step 4: Re-pot plant and water thoroughly
Fill your pot one-third of the way with the amended soil. Remove your plant from its water bowl and carefully arrange in the pot, making sure the roots are evening placed. Evenly distribute the rest of the soil back into the pot. Thoroughly water the plant–you’ll be surprised how much water the soil will hold.
Here are pictures of my plants taken several days after being re-potted in the diaper-amended soil:
The super-absorbent diaper gel keeps the soil from drying out so fast which means you can go longer in between waterings.
Now the only thing that stands between me and better looking houseplants is this little creature right here:
My Baby Girl LOVES nibbling the tender shoots of my spider plants. Since she’s my grass-eater, I go ahead and divulge her. Pretty soon there won’t be much grass for her to eat outside so she’ll need a substitute. Of course, I could just buy her a container of cat grass, but she’d much rather chew up my plants.
Hope you found this tutorial helpful or if anything inspiring. If anything, the soil mixing is very therapeutic.
This might be the most pleasure diapers have ever brought anyone. 🙂
What’s your favorite trick to caring for houseplants?