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When your home is listed and you’re out-of-town, there are plenty of kennels and other facilities that will mind your dog or cat. In fact, the pet-care business is booming! However, the same options aren’t available for your houseplants. So what do you do?

First, keep in mind that plants can go for several days or even a couple of weeks without water. This frequently happens in their natural habitats. So if you’re gone for just a few days, your flora will probably be fine.

Flowering plants tend to need the most water. Give them an extra dose just before you leave. Also, make sure they are in indirect, rather than direct sunlight. That will help them conserve water.

If you’re going to be away for a week or more, consider one of the several products on the market that water plants automatically. Many of these allow you to adjust how much water each plant gets — and when.

You’ll find plenty of do-it-yourself instructions for making your own automatic waterer on the internet, from plastic cups with tiny holes in the bottom to upside-down bottles with wicks. These might work, but you’ll want to test them first.

Of course, your best option might be to have a friend or trusted neighbour take care of the plants for you. Just be sure to give them clear instructions.

Your houseplants will thank you.

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