plant week

This £6 German Self-Watering Doodad Helps Me Keep My Many Plants Alive

My little birdy pal in action. Photo: Courtesy Coco Khan

If one of the numerous articles written about millennials in sweeping generalisations are to be believed (personal favourites include ‘How Millennials Killed Off the Doorbell Industry’ and ‘Why Won’t Millennials Eat Marmalade?’), women of my generation are diverting their energy for children into pets and houseplants. This has always been a particularly fascinating observation for me because until earlier this year, every single one of my houseplants died. I couldn’t help but extrapolate from this and wonder if it meant I may well be a bad mother someday. Luckily, I have found a friend to help me reach my nurturing goals: my little birdie bro, the Scheurich Bordy watering bird.

The German brand’s Bordy bird acts as a visually pleasing container for plant water. It’s made from plastic, which means its frost free and can work with outside plants as well as being durable should any cats find themselves tempted to attack it. The water goes into the bird through its beak and then is gradually released through the clay pointed end, which has been inserted into the soil.

The soil only extracts what it needs, and so the risk of overwatering is eliminated. In effect, your plant is self-watering, leaving you to do other things that don’t cause you to have an existential crisis about motherhood. It’s worth mentioning that a popular DIY version of this is to use an upside-down water bottle or wine bottle with the bottleneck inserted into soil — but for a few pounds extra, you can avoid the neighbours mistaking your self-watering system for the debris from a particularly big night in.

The Bordy bird comes in different sizes and colours to work with your décor and plant size (I use the medium-size one in pearl green). Scheurich says this particular one will ‘water’ my plant for four days, but in practice I have found it to be much more than this. I fill my birdie up roughly every two weeks — and sure, by then it’s often run dry if the heating’s been on — but my plants have never looked happier. Maybe my specific plants don’t need much water, or maybe I’m just lucky. But no longer is my living room a museum for objects of neglect but an oasis of joy and promise.

[Editor’s note: The Bordy has gone up in price since this story was first published.]

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This £6 German Doodad Helps Me Keep My Many Plants Alive