Autopot: One of the Best Self-Watering Hydroponic Systems

Autopot: One of the Best Self-Watering Hydroponic Systems

Updated 8/27/23.

Autopot is a self-watering hydroponic system that does not require a pump or timer! You can run the entire system without any electricity, making it perfect for greenhouses and hoop houses. With this innovative design, nutrient rich water flows from the reservoir via tubing to a base tray with the patented AQUAvalve. The AQUAvalve uses gravity, a float valve, and a vacuum seal to stop the flow when there is 1" of water in the tray.

Diagram of individual 3.9 gallon pots.

From the Autopot base, the nutrient solution flows into the pot. Porous, hydrophilic media will soak up the water slowly as needed, ensuring consistent moisture levels. With non-porous media, the roots reach in to the bottom of the pot and absorb the nutrients directly, similar to Kratky. When all of the water has been absorbed, the vacuum seal of the AQUAvalve will release and allow more nutrient solution to flow into the tray.

Autopot 4 pot layout diagram from above, displayed two ways. one with to pots on each side, one with 4 pots in a straight line

Autopots permit a suitable amount of water to reach the plant’s roots without overflow or oversaturation. Optimal moisture and nutrients encourage vigorous growth from your plants. How frequently plants will undergo this wet & dry cycle depends on the individual plant needs. Larger plants, and plants with higher nutrient needs, will go through it more often.

Plants are only taking up as much water and nutrients as they need, there's no runoff to dispose of, and no water lost through evaporation from spray or drip emitters. That means less water and nutrients used, which is better for the environment and your wallet.

Autopot 48 pot system with 6 rows of pots

Dozens of Autopots can be used with a single nutrient reservoir, for either hydroponics or traditional soil irrigation. The number of pots determines the size of the reservoir you’ll need. They range from a single pot with 12.4 gallon reservoir to 100 pots with a 200 gallon FlexiTank reservoir.

When setting up your system, reference Autopot's video resources. Start by transplanting an established plant into your pot with your preferred substrate. Before placing the pot on the Autopot base, water deeply and allow to drain. Then clean the outside of the pot to keep the valve mechanism clean, and place the pot on the base. Your system will remain off until the plants have properly rooted (about 5-10 days), and plants have absorbed any remaining water. If you wish to flush your plants, replace nutrient solution with only plain water in your reservoir for the last 10-14 days.



Overtime, roots may try to grow inside the AQUAvalve. Keep the AQUAvalue unobstructed from sediment or plant roots to ensure a constant nutrient supply, and consistent growth. Gently trimming or redirecting roots away from the valve will reduce plant stress, and prevent damage to your autopot.

As with any type of hydroponics, check your reservoir frequently. Odors, films, and slimy growth are a sign of harmful bacteria. Especially in a greenhouse setting, heat and stagnant nutrient solution don't mix. While not required, you can aerate your reservoir with an air pump and air stone to reduce pathogens. 

To order your Autopot system, visit Taproot Hydroponics, your certified Autopot retailer.

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