We are going to discuss cachepots today but first, let’s talk about the pronunciation. The correct pronunciation is cash-po or cash-pot and in French, it means to “hide a pot”. It is basically an ornamental holder for a plant in another pot. So how do you use it for your houseplants?
What is a cachepot?
A cachepot is a pot without a drainage hole. It can be decorative or plain, the point being, it hides the utilitarian grower’s pot the plant is in when it is sold to you.
Many pots are without holes
Often when a plant is purchased, it is in a cachepot. This is especially common with orchids. It makes them easier to ship and also for the workers where it ends up (garden center, big box, grocery store, etc.) to water. The water won’t run all over and it doesn’t need a saucer. On the other hand, it doesn’t have a drainage hole, which is usually not good for the plant. Why? There is nowhere for the water to go and if too much is applied, the plant will be left standing in water. If not removed, the extra water could rot the roots and cause the death of the plant.
Hide the pots
In the pictures below, I took the plants out of the pots to show you the “hidden” pots. The gymnocalycium cactus on the left is in a cute pot with an attached stand. The phalaenopsis orchid on the right is in a gold ribbed cachepot. These pots, as you can see are hiding the grower’s pot.
How to Use a Cachepot
Cachepots are fine as long as they are used correctly. If I get a plant in a cachepot and I don’t want to drill a hole in it, then I leave it in the cachepot. The key to keeping the plant happy is to remove the plant to water it. Take it to the sink, and give it a thorough watering, LET IT DRAIN, and then place it back in the cachepot. That makes all the difference. You have allowed the superfluous water to drain away from the plant so it isn’t standing in water.
Drill a hole
I don’t recommend planting a plant directly into a cachepot without first drilling a hole. If it isn’t hiding another pot, it no longer can be called a cachepot, right? Planting a plant directly into a pot without a drainage hole just sets you up for failure. It is almost impossible to know whether the plant received enough water to moisten the whole root ball and if it has too much water, how would you know? I almost always drill a hole in a cachepot and then directly pot my plant into it. Then I can water it until water drains out of the hole, letting me know that the plant has enough water and the whole root ball is moistened.
Know you know what a cachepot is and how to use it for your houseplants in the best way. Either leave your plant in the grower’s pot and “hide” it in the cachepot, or drill a hole and plant it directly into the pot.
I hope this took the mystery away from what a cachepot is and how to use it properly.
Have a great week, plant friends!