Caring For Plants While On Vacation
Updated: Nov 19
When you’re going on a vacation, especially an extended one, you have a long list of things to take care of before you leave. And not to add one more item to your list, but – what is your plan for your plants? Let’s talk taking care of your plants while you are on vacation.
Your cacti should be good for up to a month without water. You will want to move them to a shadier location (to avoid water evaporation) and remove any buds or flowers that require more sun and water to support. If you are gone for longer than a month, you will need to find someone to look in on them (or send them on a vacation to a friend’s home!).
As with cacti, succulents can go without water for longer than most other plants. If you are only going to be gone for up to two weeks, succulents – like jade and snake plants – will be fine without water. Just give them some water before you go, take them out of direct sunlight, prune buds and flowers, and let them enjoy themselves while you are away.
Remove dead leaves (and dying leaves if they are more than 50% damaged) from your plants, so that all the nutrients and water available goes directly to the parts of the plants that actually need it. This also helps to stop diseases and pests from spreading.
Adjust the room temperature
Make sure the area where you will be keeping your plants is not too warm or cold. Keep them out of direct sunlight and out of the way of vents and drafts. Also, keep the room somewhere between 13C and 20C.
If you are only going to be gone for one week to ten days, the simplest method is to gather all of your plants and put them either in the kitchen sink (if you don’t have many) or the bathtub, with an inch or two of water (remember to remove the saucer that they sit on, so they can actually access the water). You might also want to lay out some towels first, so nothing gets scratched.
Cover them in wet newspaper or clear plastic to keep the humidity high.
If you need your plants to last longer than a week and can’t find anyone to water them while you are gone, use stakes and plastic bags/sheeting to wrap each one individually to create a little greenhouse effect that will recycle water. Water well before you wrap them, and make sure the plastic isn’t touching the leaves.
Ideally, someone will love your plants for your while you are away. But, if not, there are ways to keep your plants healthy while you are enjoying your vacation.