The holidays are fast approaching—a time for festive celebrations, long-distance travel, and plant and pet abandonment. For your flora, at least, Dutch designer Sander Lorier has created a clever solution: The Natural Balance, a ceramic self-watering planter that can sustain a houseplant for up to four weeks.
Made by hand in Lorier's studio in Rotterdam, The Natural Balance looks like a standard pastel-colored ceramic planter save for a corked spout on its side. Pull out the cork to fill up the pot's reservoir with up to three cups of water, which seeps slowly through a permeable, earthenware partition between the reservoir and the potted plant. The plant can drink up the water on its own timeframe—cacti and succulents need less water at a time than, say, a Golden Pothos—and requires significantly less tending-to.
Self-watering planters aren't a new idea, but Lorier's pot stands out for its clever design details: For one, The Natural Balance shifts in weight and tips back when the reservoir is empty, giving the pot its name. There's also a magnetic slider on the bottom of the pot that adjusts the pivoting point on the pot, and makes it compatible for taller or shorter plants (all of which can be up to six inches in diameter).
The Natural Balance is now raising funds on Kickstarter, and ships in April, which means that it won't be ready for use this holiday season. Fortunately, a planter this self-reliant is useful year round.
The planter is available for €35/ $37 for early bird backers or €39/ $41 regularly, and comes in cool gray, mint green and pastel pink. Find it here.