MakerBot Print is our newest print-prepration software, which supports native CAD files and STL assemblies,
allows you to interact with all your printers via the Cloud, and many other exciting new features.

Download Now


Self-Watering Planter (Small)

by parallelgoods Jul 2, 2015
Download All Files

Please Login to Comment

Comments deleted.

just got my ender 3, I have been wanting to print this for ages but my monoprice select mini was too small, printing this was a breeze and I love this planter. Thanks

Thank YOU for printing! Be sure to share your make if you haven't already!

I am kicking myself... I didn't realize that Slic3r was so easy, and Cura was so bad for the settings. I have reprinted 3 times now, with this weird thing happening. I have a picture of it, but I have no idea what is causing it, and it's a pain in the butt to fix with my 3D Pen... It is almost like a mesh. I know the picture is bad, but basically it looks like this on the side: ░░▒▒▓▓██

Definitely an odd anomaly. Is this happening on the pot or the reservoir? Also – are you using slic3r or cura?

Both. I was using Cura, i think, but then i switched to Slic3r, but either one did that.

been asked before, but can someone just give me an idea how much water to put in...
printed a smaller version to test, but the water became drenched.
and like i say absolutly no idea how much water to put in...or im i missing something

You can see 3 little windows - max is top, min is bottom. Also inside the waterfilling tube you see the line - it is max, min - water can't be seen inside this tube

Thanks that’s really helpful

Do you print them separately and how big is it?

It's two separate parts so you can print it in two different colors (if you'd like). They can be printed at the same time if your printer bed is large enough

Comments deleted.

Hello Parallel Goods!
Do you know if a hole punched through the top line of the logo with a flathead screwdriver would function correctly as an overflow drain (to prevent accidental overfilling)?

printed the inner part on my mono price mini 2 and the outer shell on the ender 3. I did 5 bottom layers and 5 layers on the wall to help make sure it is waterproof as water continually sits in it.

Will this work with cat grass? Not sure if the roots would grow long enough or if the soil would simply soak up the water so that it would be fine?

check out the post i made, i have 4 total with cat grass in them, within 1 week it was 6 inches tall! the soil stays damp even in our dry house. the roots are going crazy they grew right through the holes down into the water and its loving every minute of it

Are the layers supposed to be mesh? I printed at 90% but I don't think that would be the cause.

Comments deleted.

Thank you for this thing! Thumbs up to you!

  • Posted with 3D Geeks Thingiverse Browser App
Comments deleted.

Thank you for this thing! Thumbs up to you!

  • Posted with 3D Geeks Thingiverse Browser App
Comments deleted.

Thank you for this thing! Thumbs up to you!

  • Posted with 3D Geeks Thingiverse Browser App

I don't get how that is supposed to work. The water level will be the same in the reservoir and in the pot. It's just going to be drenched soil.

the pot sits higher than the resevoir, and has a throat that goes down into the water. It allows the soil to absorb water up, and the roots can get to the amount of water they like.

my roots have gone crazy down in the base! they are loving it

Mine has some problems and sadly it isn't waterproof.. Someone to help me understand what went wrong?

print with 5 layers on bottom and 5 layers on walls have 4 no problems

Comments deleted.

What plants do you recommend?

Nice design -- My Ender 3 didnt like your settings. Used Default Cura for my printer., Slower speed for support and set infill to 100. Took longer, but came out nice,.

Thank you for this thing! Thumbs up to you!

  • Posted with 3D Geeks Thingiverse Browser App
Comments deleted.

Thank you for this thing! Thumbs up to you!

  • Sent from 3D Geeks: Thingiverse Browser for Android

What are you guys doing for drainage? Are you just filling it full of dirt or putting a few rocks at the bottom? I figured it if it was just dirt it would eventually end up in the reservoir when its wet.

In our experience, we've just use packed dirt in the pot. A bit might seep into the reservoir when filled, but as long as you clean the reservoir once in awhile it shouldn't get too bad in there.

Comments deleted.

Can I use this design?

I have a question: How long did it take you to print?

The total print time for both parts based on the recommended settings is about 8 hours. Your mileage may vary, of course, depending on your printer and your slicer settings.

its ok to print this model with ABS filament.
check mine:

Self-Watering Planter (Small)

I really like the design. But the STL is has a very low resolution. The pot is not round but but has many "edges". This is also visible in your prints. Is this intentional, do you go for a low poly style? Because I think if yes, the resolution is still too good.

I just started to print the model but canceld it, because these edges were clearly visible in the print.

Could you upload an updated STL file with a higher resolution?

Good eye. We thought we had uploaded the higher resolution of this model years ago, but apparently not.

Try re-downloding the files from thingiverse, or feel free to get them from our website (where we had the higher resolution version available).

Oh wow :D Great, thanks :) !

for the planter-pot what sense do I have to print it

how exactly am i supposed to print this without supports?

The parts print as oriented in the file. The angle of the pot is 45° so if a printer is sufficiently calibrated it should be able to handle that angle no problem!

any reason why the infill piece doesn't just get printed upside down instead? Then no supports could possibly be warranted at all?

The top of it is slightly rounded and the small circular indent is at a slightly different height. You could probably print it upside down if you trimmed a little from the top of it to make it perfectly flat, but it does already print fine in its original orientation with no supports and just a brim added for adhesion.

I saw you have a larger 5 inch one on your website, do you have an 8 or 10 inch size?

Comments deleted.

Thank you for sharing and thank you for nice time lapse recording of the print!

awesome! one of the best prints i´ve done so far!

How many times do i neddo to refil it , and how much water do i need to put in

The plant will take as much water as it needs, just refill it when there's little to no water left inside the reservoir. The amount of time will vary from plant to plant.

The fill line is the ridge that's at the bottom of the spout on the reservoir.

Comments deleted.

Can this be scaled up by, say, 150 to 200%? Will the bigger holes make it absorb too much water and drown the plant? Thinking of planting oregano or mint.

We've personally planted Mint in our small planter and it worked great.

We don't have any experience with scaling the design, but we do have a larger version of this design available on our website that we have used to plant oregano: https://parallelgoods.co/collections/desk-collection-2015/products/self-watering-planter-large

Thank you, just got the large version!

I like this idea but I see many possibilities for improvement. I may design my own and post it soon.

Does anyone know about how much filament it takes?

The two parts consume roughly the following amount of filament:

  • self-watering planter (small) pot - 75g
  • self-watering planter (small) reservoir - 95g

Your mileage may vary depending on your printer, of course, but should be somewhat close to that amount.

I have printed complete and tested the pot . And the only spot that the waters leaking out is the LOGO spot , the three strip line . Can I know is it normal ? And how can I solve it ?

Use nail polish over the area leaking to seal it.

Comments deleted.

Every printer is a little different, so it's tough to diagnose exactly what the problem might be. Try reprinting the pot with a greater infill percentage and make sure that any thin wall feature settings are active in your slicing software.

If you're still having difficulty with leaks after trying different settings, you can always coat the bottom of the pot in a layer of wood glue in order to create a water proof seal. See the "thing details" tab for more detailed photos on how to do this.

There's holes in the bottom of the pot, which allows the plant to take water whenever it gets thirsty! Water goes in the reservoir, and you refill it via the spout.

That's awesome i am going to make one as soon as i finish my other projects.

Great design but I wolder if PLA is really a good idea here since PLA is bio-degradeable...I printed this with ABS and spray paint the reservoir with clear paint and they works great (and I don't need to worry about the pot break-down on its own in the long term).

We choose to work with PLA so a wider range of printer owners would be able to print our designs. While PLA is biodegradable it is not water soluble, so using it for a planter should be just fine. We've got planters printed in PLA that are over two years old at this point and still entirely water tight.

ABS works too though, we'd love to see a photo of your make!

I posted a photo of my print. The concern is not about leaking... PLA will not host bacteria but it can be attacked by bacteria products and decompose. In the professional environment, indoor potting soil is usually sterilized so that is probably not a big deal. But if someone just pick up some yard soil and left it in a PLA pot for years, funny things can happen......
The pot have a pretty small footprint, and it is a circle without corners, so experienced "3D printer operator" can usually pull it out even their printers does not have heated bed.

that makes sense what type of plant or bonsai did u put in it.

I think is some kind of bonsai...Someone left a small bag of seeds in the fridge for who knows how long so I suppose it is bonsai or something similar......

I need an even smaller version of this item, it it acceptable under CC BY-NC-ND license if I scaled it down -to lets say 50%- when I am printing?

Just to clarify, the CC BY-NC-ND license allows you to download and remix the design to your hearts desire, but you are not allowed to distribute the modified designs. For more information, feel free to check out the Creative Commons Attribution - Non-Commercial - No Derivatives license.

It is more than acceptable. As long as you're not trying to sell or distribute the product, you may resize or alter the appearance of it as you with.
You can also post your modified end product of this model here in Thingiverse. Just be sure to post it as a remixed product and give credit and link to this product.

I printed three of these and all my plants are very healthy. I had a few problems with water holding but that is just my printer

License is saying that this model cannot be remixed, what do you mean by that ? Can I take the shape and model it by myself but with modifications ? What I understand by "no remix" is "don't take the STL file and make modification of it", can you be more clear on that level ? I'm really interested by the design of it and I want to make a connected version of it.

Our model was released under the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial-No Derivatives 3.0 (CC BY-NC-ND).

Per the CC BY-NC-ND license: You are free to:

Share — copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format. The licensor cannot revoke these freedoms as long as you follow the license terms. Under the following terms:

  • Attribution — You must give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license.
  • Non-Commercial — You may not use the material for commercial purposes.
  • No Derivatives — If you remix, transform, or build upon the material, you may not distribute the modified material.

You can learn more about the specifics of the of this license here: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0

that's not very community friendly of you. It's yours and you can do with it what you will but I'll not be endorsing it, nor printing it with that license on such basic shapes and ideas.

shame on you.

come on... that is low

I disagree obviously. To each their own.

I would like to inform you that this model is sold commercially by the uploader which means it has to be this type of license. What you are saying is completely disrespectful to the model designer. It's like saying that a huge company can't copyright their jingle because it's "such basic notes". If you are unhappy with the license, design a model yourself and feel free to distribute it however you want. Stop complaining about people's right to set terms and get on with your life.

I do design my own models and the ones I post on here will never have a no derivatives license. There's really no rationale for that. The fact that it's sold commercially doesn't justify it either. Your comment is misleading and far more disrespectful than mine. I can voice my opinion same as you.

If you don't want people improving your designs then this really isn't the place. It's not beneficial to the community. I think you'd have to be pretty selfish to disagree with that. The only motivation for approving of a no definitives license on a mechanical design is because you want something for free.

This is a model distribution platform. The creator has the right to set their own terms without getting blatantly rude comments like this. This model creator owns a business selling these and they don't want people to be able to copy them and sell them on their own. The restrictions aren't on here to stop people from modifying it and you're completely missing that point.

you've missed two important things. I first acknowledged their right to do what they want with their model. This is not lost on me, but it doesn't mean I can't comment on it. Second "they don't want people to be able to copy them and sell them on their own" has absolutely nothing do with this. That would be the non commercial license. I'm talking about the no derivatives portion. It sounds to me like you need to do some reading on the CC license. And while you're at it you can find out that the Creative Commons License doesn't even apply to this model... but that is a whole 'nother discussion.

If you're advocating for people to post their non artistic material with a no derivatives license then you're advocating for free stuff while snubbing the community. That is very wrong to me and I'll fight it all day. You want rude and disrespectful? you've been quite rude yourself, but not nearly as rude as posting this model with no derivatives.

Perhaps I'll post a cube, tetrahedron, and sphere with this same license then complain that all the models on thingiverse are in violation of my license and ask they be removed... it's completely absurd and so is this.

Whatever bro. I tried to explain the truth but you obviously aren't mature enough to understand. It's not worth arguing over because you obviously won't stop.

no I won't stop because there's too many people out there like you who refuse to understand the CC license and how it's supposed to be used and you refuse to think of the community first instead of "oh look at the free stuff I get!"

Maturity is being able to have a conversation with someone who has a different opinion than you and not calling them names or making derogatory remarks about them... I'll let you figure out which one of use that is.

Hopefully you'll come to your senses one day and learn more about why this is important.

Comments deleted.

I like this pot design
I made some attachments that fit in the full port for a grow light on mine. Can't figure out how to share it here tho

Why do you not allow the community to remix this item? Such a shame when people are closed source and acting too commercially in this industry - seeing as it is open source ideology that has enormously developed 3D printing!

You could very easily make something similar to this in a modelling program.

Unfortunately it leaks like no tomorrow. I filled it with water up to the line and in about 8 hours it was half empty. and the house was flooded (true story). I don't have any waterproof glue but maybe I'll grab one the next time I'm in Home Depot and give that a (s)whirl.

Damn son, half of one of these flooded your house? Where you live, Lilliput? ;-D

I've printed these on two different printers and no leaks yet - do make sure you have enough inner and outer shells (I think I had mine set at 6). If that doesn't work maybe you could try printing 100% infill? Good luck, hope you work it out, these things are great.


Thank you for the laugh, made my day

what's the line in the stout?

It's the fill line for the water

Thank you. That is the best thing I ever saw!!!!

Five stars.

Thanks for the compliment! We have more great designs available on our website: http://parallelgoods.co

I would love to see a version of this that has adjustable holes on the bottom, to adjust how quickly water can soak through, if it's to wet or to dry.

I've printed two so far but both have the same extruder problem near the middle of the pot where the interior lip is. The filament makes strands on the inside and as a result there are stray strands. Any suggestions? The rest of the print is fine.


Have Combing on. it wont cut across center, It will only follow the printing path to travel so you don't get that stringing.

I've encountered some artifacts like this before on round objects (not this model). What slicer are you using? Additionally, what layer height are you printing at?

I'm using Slic3r, with provided settings .3mm and 10% infill. I will try again.

Which version of Slic3r? I ask because the latest official stable release (1.2.9) is anything but. I've been using the pre-compiled Prusa fork of Slic3r and it's been providing much better results: https://github.com/prusa3d/Slic3r/releases

You can use it with any printer (doesn't have to be a Prusa i3 or anything).

Thank you, I truly appreciate your help!

I am using the Slic3r included with the Prusa i3 MK2, I will try that version asap.


As cool as it is, dependant on your printer, there are still some flaws. I tried to print it as close as the instructions stated, but it leaks. It is well built, but not well enough. Water leaked though, most likely after several hours. Still pretty neat.

The settings we recommend aren't hard and fast rules, more guidelines to get you started. You might want to try printing again, adjusting speed and temperature (slower, hotter respectively).

If you're still unable to get a water tight print try coating the bottom of the pot in a layer of Titebond-3 Wood Glue.

I had leaking so i just coated the outside with epoxy make it a cool finish to

I'm having issue printing the pot. When I put it into my slicer, the smaller part is on the bottom. I set a raft and went for it, and it's like there's a gap in the .stl. I flipped it over in 123D design and it still wouldn't go. Am I just orienting the part wrong?

I'm having issue printing the pot. When I put it into my slicer, the smaller part is on the bottom. I set a raft and went for it, and it's like there's a gap in the .stl. I flipped it over in 123D design and it still wouldn't go. Am I just orienting the part wrong?

I'm having issue printing the pot. When I put it into my slicer, the smaller part is on the bottom. I set a raft and went for it, and it's like there's a gap in the .stl. I flipped it over in 123D design and it still wouldn't go. Am I just orienting the part wrong?

The pot part was designed to print with the smaller, perforated area on the bottom. That said, we haven't experienced the issue you're describing with there being a gap in the STL? You might want to try downloading the STL again and seeing if that does any better, and maybe try printing without the raft?

I noticed that as well. I ended up inverting it and it printed fine on my Maker Select 2.1. However the top didn't turn out as nice as I'd hoped and one part seemed to be just slightly not touching. I was able to salvage it with an exacto knife but if I were to do it again I would print it as intended. Bridging ended up not being an issue fwiw.

Any particular reason for printing the pot with the smaller diameter (perforated area) on the bottom? It would seem logical that the wider side would be a more stable base for printing?


The pot was designed to print upright to avoid requiring any bridging when printing. Also, this afforded the option to add a nice fillet to the top edge of the pot.

Ah - Hadn't noticed that the bottom was solid and good thought about having a nice finished edge on top. Thanks for sharing your great design!

Thank you for asking about it! Be sure to check out our other designs, and share your makes when you print them!

We just wanted to drop a note and let everyone know that we've released a new collection of 3D printable designs: The Entryway Collection.

Available now on our website: https://parallelgoods.co/collections/the-entryway-collection

We've also released another free design on thingiverse as part of this collection, our Push-Pin Clip, download it for free here: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1885142

Push-Pin Clip

An great idea about sel-watering planter. It looks very easy to make sure the plants alive even when people are traveling and couldn't take care of their plants at home or at office,for a water tight print. And I think it will be great if there are two more functions could be considersted:

  1. To be available for more plants in one set.

  2. To develop other natural materials other than plastics. This might be something challenging, but could be positive impact from environment protection prospective.

OMG! I so need one of these! I have this basil plant that I keep forgetting to water. The 5th one died last week!

Hello I have a question, how much do you need to water it up to, and does this leak?

There's a small fill line at the bottom of the spout on the reservoir, it's in line with the top edge of the logo on the outside of the reservoir.

All printers are different and provide different results, but many people are able to get water tight prints by printing with our recommended settings (see the print instructions tab). You're unable to get a water tight print, try coating the bottom of the interior of the reservoir in Titebond-3 wood glue (see the post-processing instructions for details).

Nice design. I like to see designers create useful stuff. Have you considered protecting your designs other than using the Creative Commons license? After seeing one of my early designs (with attribution, non-commercial CC license) similarly copied in parts and put on Kickstarter, I have become wary of sharing anything functional under these licenses unfortunately... Unless it is art...

We just posted a preview of our upcoming Entryway collection on our blog, check it out here: http://parallelgoods.co/blogs/news

And while you're there, and you haven't yet, stop by our store and see some of our other designs! http://parallelgoods.co

i think the soil contaminated the water, its now brown

The water may turn a little brown from the soil, but lucky for us the plants won't mind a little soil in their water. ;)

Also, every few cycles it’s helpful to rinse out the reservoir and let the soil dry out to prevent mold from growing inside the pot & reservoir.

It's quite hard to see the line in the spout and also, do you think that mosquitos may fly in through the spout and lay their eggs there

If you'd like you can remix your spout to have a mesh cover to prevent mosquito entry. That is one huge plus of 3D printing. If you do, please post your remix for others.

I have the model printed with factor 1.2. Actually are at the lower pattern sufficiently Perimeter available. However, it represents a vulnerability. The water comes with me as first through. Too bad, because it looks great.
Would it be possible to remove the pattern?

will this work for plants that don't need much water?
i want to put a succulent plant in it because i really like the design

You can put succulents in here but to your point, they don't really need much water, you wouldn't really use the "self-watering" aspect of the design. Stay tuned and follow us on thingiverse/twitter/instagram, we're working on a new batch of plant-specific planters, including one for succulents!

Good invention.
When the 3d prototype works, if you are in need of mass production(custom plastic injection molding), We are here to meet your demands. sales01@rpimoulding.com Vicky from Xiamen, China

hi, for a printer with a 0.4 nozzle how many shells should i have, and what should the temperature of the extruder and platform. oh and i'm printing in pla :)

also what shade is the blue in the thumbnail

Check out the notes in the printing section for shells.

Regarding temperature, every 3D printer is different and requires some calibration to get the best results, but good starting settings for PLA are 200º for the nozzle and 60º for the bed.

And finally, the blue color pictured is Makerbot Blue PLA.

That's a really nice pot! Now printing it as a gift for my friend. I'll post photos when I am finished :D

If I wanted to could I sell this and start my own business? @ParrellGoods

We're thrilled to hear you like the design and flattered by your offer to sell them. However, we're not currently interested in doing any kind of licensing for retail sales of our designs. Thanks for asking!

Is this sizeable by 0.1 on cura

Not sure what you understand by "sizeable"? Do you mean scaling?

I'm going to try to print it, but why not supports ????

If your printer is well calibrated the 45 degree overhang of the pot shouldn't be a problem!

I'm going to try to print it, but why not supports ????

Comments deleted.

For the life of me I can't get the Pot to print. It keeps getting to a certain point on the chamfer and then goes wild. I wonder if I'm having a possible missing layer issue that someone below was mentioning. I need to step thru my simplify3D file to see if there is anything obvious.

Put a raft to the model and it will stick to the bed.

Wasn't a problem getting the pot to stick to the bed, when printing the 45 degree angle it always failed at a certain point. I ended up having to use supports to get it to print correctly.

Print in a smaller layer height.

what is your slicing setting?

I'm printing on a Taz 5 and S3D with the recommended settings. It prints fine (nice piece), but I get no infill because the multiplier of the 3 vertical walls and the .5 nozzle basically eliminate the infill ALMOST completely. I have infill set to 20%, and no infill occurs. So the question is, what is the thickness of the wall geometry so that I can determine proper wall/fill. Thanks.

What you're experiencing is totally normal with a .5 nozzle and will yield better results as far as water tightness goes!

Thanks for the reply. As it turns out, this is a function of the wall dimension and the nozzle diameter compounded by the fact that S3D does not do a good job with thin wall infill.

One question... Won't soil fall trough the little holes of the pot? I mean the whole concept works, by letting the soil suck in water from the bottom, right?

The wholes on the angled surface of the pot are more for the soil to breathe, while the holes on the bottom "spout" of the pot are for absorbing water. Some soil may fall through these holes, but not much. We recommend that you clean out the reservoir every few refills to avoid mold from growing inside the pot & reservoir.

Hello I'm printing this right now. I plan on putting mint seeds in it I have a pack of 300 seeds how many should I put in. Thank you!

I'd put in about 8. Mint spreads.

how would this fair in a M3D printer? I'm newer to this and not sure how to change infill settings and such. unless that is the same as fill density for the M3D? I know I have to scale the height down a little bit in order for it to fit but other than that should this work?


I have made it on the M3D and it tends to leak, so i recommend maybe having a lower quality and hollow and thick walls. That may help. Other than that it looks great!

how did you go about printing the inner piece? My M3D says "Cannot print because it is outside the printable bounds of the printer"

Rescale your model so it falls within the m3D.

I am supposed to fill the reservoir up to the line inside of the spout, but there is no line. The only line I can see is inside of the reservoir, but not anywhere in the spout.

The fill line is just above the bottom of the spout, in line with the top of the logo.

I know a few things about 3D printers, but very little about plants. What type of plant might you recommend for setting on my desk?

We recommendherbs like basil, oregano, parsley, and cilantro; as well as typical house plants.

Mint also works really well, and is great for freshening up the air around your desk!

My print curls and the first few layers, thus the rounding at the bottom turns out ugly :/
I've had many curling issues with my Printrbot Simple Metal, I dont know why. But overhangs always tend to curl up, and I have never gotten a clean round overhand before. I am using a stronger fan on the left, and a big computer fan to cool the right side of the print. Whatever I do, always curling one one side.
Printing with or without doesnt make a difference either...

Have you tried the improved fan shroud for the simple metal? saved me loads of annoyance... i had to print it twice once with the first defective print to get a perfect print

What kind of filament do you use? I'd recommend PLA since it's food, and water safe, and it doesn't warp nearly as much as ABS, if you're not already using PLA. I use the HATCHBOX brand, they have really good plastic at a cheap price. BTW I wasn't paid to say this. =)

I'm using PLA indeed, the pot looks better now, allthough it cracked at several points. I'm going to give it another try soon.

The Pot failed for me too close to the end too. It just stopped printing. I scaled it to 85% and I am using Slic3r

I flipped it 180 degrees in the slicing program and it failed around the same area...so I just took the two failed halves..sanded them...and glued them together...works perfect now :P

It sounds like it could be one of two things. Either the part is too big for your printer (even after scaling it down), or slic3r isn't finishing the slicing operation all the way. Try opening the gcode file in a text editor and scrolling all the way to the bottom of the file and see if the end gcode that slic3r adds is in the file. If the end gcode from slic3r is in the file, then it's probably just the part being too big for your printer.

Additionally, try re-downloading the file from thingiverse, perhaps something happened during the download.

Dear friends,

I've problem to print the POT; it seems that there aren't some layers! :-( I think a problem with original file
the RESERVOR is ok


PS: I can send some pictures of the mistake

Missing layers isn't a problem we've heard of before. Share some pictures, we'd be happy to help you troubleshoot.

please...tell me email so I can send some pictures and video

Try posting the pictures to a service like http://imgur.com and sharing them there

After scaling it up a bunch, mine completed with tiny holes in the bottom of the reservoir. Water leaks out :(

Can I print the "Pot" upside down?

You can, but there is a fillet on the top edge of the Pot which others have had difficulty with. Additionally, this would most likely require support for the bottom layers of the pot, unless you're confident in your printer's ability to do bridges.

If your machine is decently calibrated, the 45° overhang of the Pot printed as oriented shouldn't be a problem.

Awesome, I'm just printing everything normally but I need a shorter print time so I scaled it down to 75%. Reservoir is printing right now I'll tell you how it goes.

Would it be possible to scale the width of this? Want to make a larger pot but with same height. Or does it mess up the walls? If not, please design another with broader base. Really like this. Will post some images of the ones I'v made soon!

Hey Robboten -

Thanks for the compliments, we're glad to hear you like our design!

We have a larger (wider) version of our self-watering planter for sale on our website: http://parallelgoods.co/products/self-watering-planter-large

Thanks again! And we'd love to see your makes!

I have tried to print this more than 10 times with various settings on a Replicator 2x with no success... It ALWAYS gets to the same point, and then chokes... Essentially, after the raft is finished, it gets about 2mm of depth and then seems to start shredding the base. Regardless of what filament I use, this is always the result. I've tried layer height of .2mm and 10% infill, and .3mm and 15% infill with no success. Bed is at 110 and nozzle at 230. Does anyone have any recommendations?

I'm using a rep2 as well and no problems here. I'm printing PLA with no raft, same temp

Are you Printing in PLA? maybe lower the temps

I printed with no raft and worked great on da vinci.

Just now printing a reservoir with Taulman t-glase clear. My daughter told me there was some coating that could be applied to make it clear as glass. The write-up is on Taulman's website and I'm thinking of trying it with this filament.

While I'd like it a bit more clear than the way t-glase prints out, I'm not sure I'd put on the number of coatings to make it clear as glass... I just want to have the color of the insert planter to show through a bit more.


You'll have to share a photo of the clear if/once you treat it with the coating.

You bet!
At the moment, I can't afford the $40+ to buy the 'SmoothOn' and have it shipped here, but I'll hit a couple of local stores to see what they have. One place just sells paints (home/auto) and might have something good.

Btw... did a water test and it leaks like a sieve with not too many holes... hahaha. Since I'm planning on coating it, I wasn't trying to get the water-tightness I am with just straight, colored, PLA.

Just printed on up!mini. Had to scale down to 80%. Printed fast with .3mm Layer. Looks good. My wife has to do the Rest now ;)

You'll have to share your make once you've got a plant in it! Glad to hear it turned out good.

What size is this thing? How can I verify that it is small enough to be printed in my P3D printer?

converting PG's inches.... 106.68mm X 121.92mm

The first reservoir I printed shocked me! LOL

I was thinking it'd be maybe 2-3 inched in diameter.... don't know why... but I was really thinking small!

Once I printed it out though... it made sense. Looks to be a great size for the intended purpose.

4.2" diameter by 4.8" height

Just printed for my wife. Had 2 of my printers running:
Pot in black
Reservoir in green.

Came out perfect for me.
25% infill
.2mm layers

I was just wondering what kind of plant you would put in this?

We've had a lot of success using it for herbs like mint, basil, oregano, parsley, and cilantro; but, most typical house plants will work just fine.

I just printed the two parts and they don't fit into each other. Quite frustrating...

I couldn't find where to input your Water Tight PLA Slic3r Settings as-is in the Makerbot print settings interface (I'm using a Replicator 2). I was only able to change the following:
Layer Height to 0.30mm
Infill Density: 10%
Infill print speed: 15mm/s

I couldn't find how to adjust the shell settings. Maybe that's what caused the bad print :(
And are the Water Tight PLA Slic3r Settings just for the reservoir?

The water tight settings are just for the reservoir, but using them for the pot is fine too.

To specify the number of shells in the Makerbot slicing software, you'll need to create a custom profile. Here's a link from the makerbot website that provides and overview on how to do that, and what the different settings mean.


Great design idea, but... that pot has "unnecessarily organic" features. You'll discover some of them when you rotate it to print in a more sane orientation.

Inspect the gcode before you send it to the printer.

Comments deleted.

The reality as I see it is that Parallelgoods has done just fine by the design and instructions volunteered here.

They have successfully printed these in the manner they spell out.

Other people here on Thingiverse have done the same

I feel that some of the wording in the comments here come across as argumentative.

The replies given by Parallelgoods has been polite, appropriate, and quite admirable considering the wording of some of the other comments here.

Kudos to Parallelgoods for that! :)

Considering the thin wall, if someone decides to rotate this object 'upside down' to print, there is less material to stick to the bed.
Printing in the orientation that Parallelgoods suggests allows for a greater surface for bed adhesion.

If it's a problem for someone to print in the orientation suggested, and they don't want to flip it and deal with support... perhaps using a raft in the suggested orientation would work well?

I just had the insert/pot fall off my printer bed yesterday after it started the angled bottom... left a whole lot of green spaghetti behind while it kept on printing. I was away at the time.

I cleaned up the mess, prepped my glass bed (which is what I should have done before that fatal print... and is what I see as the reason it failed), then successfully printed a proper green planter insert.

I'm not going to harangue Parallelegoods for recommending printing in the orientation they do... and have done successfully it seems, along with many other people here on Thingiverse.

I take responsibility for my own failures.

I'm enjoying making this... every one I print is coming out really nice, and I get to experiment with water-tight objects and now with creating glass-clear items with my t-glase.

Not sure what you mean by "unnecessarily organic" features or rotating the parts? These parts were designed to be printable in their orientation in their STLs.

I thought my printer's layer registration was broken when I printed the pot base, then I realized the base is curved for no apparent reason.

The pot part was designed to be printable... with a large dose of platform adhesion at the little base.

How do you know if your platform adhesion is good enough for all that leverage acting on the base? Well, you won't until a couple hours into the print, when you're like 90% done and then you'll find out if your adhesion was good enough.

That's just unsafe and unnecessary.

There are safer options. You could rotate the thing and print it upside down (and just live with supports in a section where it pretty much doesn't matter anyways in exchange for much better attachment and leverage), except the curved part that mates against the reservoir is slightly raised above the rest of the rim for no good reason, so if you're not watching carefully, your first layers will print in the air and fail. You have to tell the slicer to lay it flat.

And really if you think about it... if you want to print it right-side up, putting legs or supports or something around the outside isn't going to affect the design. All it's doing is sitting in water anyways. But it will strongly affect printability.

Mine is still going, but it is going to suck if it pops off the print bed at like 90% completion or something. And again, for no real good reason. The thing is filled with dirt and is sitting in water inside another opaque container. Seriously.

Sorry to hear you're having problems, but we've not experienced the problem you've described on the numerous printers we've successfully printed this planter on. Sounds like you've got it figured out for your printer though, be sure to post a make once it's complete!

Pot part survived just barely; now printing the reservoir.

The infill settings you're recommending are unnecessarily lean -- again, this is just taking risk without additional benefit.

Granted I'm printing this at 0.2mm layer height.

I do NOT recommend starving the infill at 10%. Increasing it to 25% only increases plastic usage by like 1g, but it makes a large impact on the small areas where surface bridging occurs.

I'm sure you've tested this and it works great for you on your printers, but there are just things here that are simply risk without reward.

We're glad to hear you've found settings that work for your printer. Be sure to share your make when you're done!

Good 'ole selective listening xD

Our designs are created to ensure success on a wide variety of printers. However, every 3D printer is different and there are a large variety of factors in both hardware and software influencing the success of a print. All designs on Thingiverse (not just ours) have an element of "Your Mileage May Vary," and we try to go the extra mile and develop slic3r settings with our designs which serve as a great starting point for printers.

We're always happy to help (see our previous responses to comments on this design), and numerous Thingiverse members have posted successful prints using our settings on a variety of printers.

Your striving for excellence is impressive, but my point of contention was your deflecting of goatzilla's concerns. The user brought up some valid points (which may or may not have been related to their settings), but you didn't afford them the same patience and attempt at troubleshooting that you've given others, like jleao, stupidheadshane, and chuckr.

Further, I really don't understand why the pot ought not be printed upside down.. That looks like a 45 degree angle to me; an easy feat for a well-tuned printer.

edit: Oh.. didn't see those holes. Oops.

I don't know about you all but this thing prints perfectly on my FlashForge with no supports..a 0.1 layer height and it looks soo fine. Will post pictures soon. Thanks ParallelGoods!

Ya'll complaining that it could have been designed or instructed to print better..why not make your own files and upload? lol

They are releasing the designs for free for god sake's..You want these people to kiss your feet head over heels for solutions? Pay them.

Otherwise, work with the collective community of this open-source platform and find your own solution and publish them OR make and release your own models and publish them instead of complaining and being damn critical.

One of the "all-time best design" out here in thingiverse. Clean, simple and smart.

Thank you so much for saying this, it really means a lot to us!

This is a bit of a shameless plug, but check out our site for more highly printable, beautiful designs! http://parallelgoods.co

Very nice , I realized the white tank and purple pot .
Attention because of the symbol of 3 dashes I had a leak there, I mastik inside.

I got the resevoir to print just fine on the first try with PLA. Using Simplify3d, my settings were infill 10%, .3mm layerheight, top/bottom/perimeter of 4,4,3. Overlap25%. Print took 6 hours and 30m of filament.

I made the top part and had some errors trying to get the base to start printing. After messing around for about 45 mins I now have my xyz JR printer working on making the base. Can't wait to plant my Chocolate mint.

Glad to hear you got it printing okay. Be sure to post a photo when you've got it printed and a plant in it!

I made two of these as a gift for my mom. Fabulous print. I used the same settings that are listed in the instructions.

My only problem was a small hole that appeared on the top line of the logo that is on the side of the reservoir. While printing, there was a small hole where the plastic did not fuse together correctly on the logo. The hole is so small that I needed to use a magnifying glass to see it, but it was large enough for water to leak through.

I used a small bit of water sealant on the inside and outside to patch the hole. It seems to be holding up well and has not been leaking.

My mother loves her new self-watering planters! Thank you Parallelgoods.

Glad to hear you got it sorted out. What did you use to slice the model? The latest version of slic3r has been giving us a little trouble with thin wall parts on printers with a .5mm nozzle (there's a github issue open about it).

Comments deleted.


I cant get this file to x3g to save my life. I read a bunch of things on how to do it, but I cant get it to work. Ive used ReplicatorG and Spli3r

We don't have much experience with ReplicatorG. But, to use Slic3r you'll need to use GPX to convert the GCODE file to an .X3G. You can find the GPX post-processing script on thingiverse here: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:81425/#files

And here's a great tutorial from 3D Universe where they go through the details on how to setup Slic3r to use GPX. This tutorial is for a Flash Forge Creator on a Mac, but setup should be relatively the same for any printer/os.

Start here, at 3:43 for directions for installing & configuring GPX: https://youtu.be/RkMNx0dD2vE?t=3m43s

Then, zip ahead to 16:34 for directions on configuring Slic3r to use GPX for post-processing: https://youtu.be/RkMNx0dD2vE?t=16m34s

Hope this helps!

GPX gcode to x3g converter

I need a part Assembly drawings on the 2D format with a dimension. I wanna customize my self!

any pdf format for the sketches?

We're please to announce the launch of our website! Find more great models like this Self-Watering Planter (small) at http://parallelgoods.co

Nicely done, ParallelGoods. Your free example is a very nice design and therefore good marketing. And as a result, I'm heading over there now to buy the large-format version for my mom. ;)

Thanks for the kind words, and compliments on our marketing :) Let us know what mom has to say about her planter! Share your make with us here or on Instagram & Twitter! @parallelgoods #parallelgoods

What Time for the Print ?

Karuso01 -

Your mileage may vary (nozzle size, printing speed) but we average about 8 hours for the entire print. We recommend you print the bottom layers of the reservoir at slower speeds to get a water tight print (check the instructions tab), but the rest of the print can be at your regular printing speeds.

Any recommendations for cool looking plants? Want something "funky" on it, but not sure what to grow!

Add1ct3dd -

We recommend herbs like basil, oregano, parsley, and cilantro; as well as typical house plants. Pictured in these photos is a nice mint plant we've had growing for awhile. Check out other user's makes to see what else people are planting.

any video to understands how to use it?

mp3III -

No video yet, but we'll detailed instructions downloadable via our website soon.

I've noticed that in two spots it may leak a bit of water, the logo, and the bottom of the tube. Other than that I love the design.

I had the same problem... Fixed it with a drop of instantglue (Cyanoacrylate) on the leaky-parts.

Stupidheadshane -

Did you follow the slic3r settings we specified on the instructions tab?

Originally no but I did print another with your settings and there was no improvement. My best results were with 100% infill and 6 vertical layers, 6 top and bottom layers, with a .2mm layer height. This only had a very small drip on the bottom of the tube.

If you're unable to get a watertight print, try coating the bottom in Titebond-3 Wood Glue. http://www.amazon.com/Franklin-International-1414-Titebond-3-Ultimate/dp/B0002YQ3KA

This planter is awesome. I can't wait to see more designs!

Thanks Lachlan! We'll be launching our on-line store with more designs by the end of the month! Follow us on twitter or instagram for updates.

Comments deleted.

chuckr -

PLA is not a good material to print this with. It absorbs water and becomes more brittle. Remember, it's compostable.
As for Cura, Shell Thickness = vertical shells * nozzle diameter

Wrong PLA is great for this learn to chemistry/microbiology. PLA requires temperatures in excess of 170 degrees F and thermophilic bacteria to break it down, other than that it will last as long as any other plastic.

You beat us to the punch! Thanks LupusMecahnicus for the succinct explanation for why PLA is a great plastic and great for this design!

Great - thanks for that information. It sounds like people are having success with PLA so I'm going to keep at it a little while longer. I just ordered some different colored PET so will move onto that once it arrives.

This is a great object - I love it. I had one question though:

Does anyone have the settings that produce a water-tight print when using Cura? The settings in the instructions don't really map to Cura settings:

Layer Height: .3mm

That's fine in Cura

Vertical Shells (Perimeters): 3

No equivalent in Cura

Horizontal Shells (Solid Layers): Top – 4, Bottom – 4

No equivalent in Cura - there are Top and Bottom Thickness settings, an Initial Layer Thickness setting, and a Shell Thickness setting (all in mm)

Infill: 10%

That's fine in Cura - I don't see why I wouldn't want a 100% fill here though.

Speed: Top Solid Infill – 15mm/s, Solid infill – 15mm/s

That's fine in Cura

I was able to get a water-tight print by using the mostly default Cura settings when printing with UPET, but have never gotten a water-tight print with PLA. Even after using the wood glue to try and seal the inside, it still leaked after a while.

Chuckr -

Unfortunately we don't have any experience with Cura. Check out this make from thingiverse user SmokyFrosty: https://www.thingiverse.com/make:151802

He says he printed it on an Ultimaker2, sliced with Cura, perhaps he could provide a little insight into the settings?

Self-Watering Planter (Small)

Roger that - thanks for the pointer.

May I have permisssion to retail it?

No, we do not want this product to be sold or used for retail purposes. We appreciate you asking.

First off - thanks for the awesome print parallelgoods!!

I'm looking for ideas - what's everyone planting? I'm sort of hoping for a nice year-around plant to keep in the office. Any ideas would be awesome since my plant knowledge is limited :-)

ESUNintel - Thanks for the compliments! Herbs do really well - Basil, Mint, maybe Rosemary. They smell good too.

Probably a stupid question, but how does it water itself? Water cohesion?

There's holes in the bottom of the pot, which allows the plant to take water whenever it gets thirsty.

I usually just increase flow (overextude) on the (bottom)layers to get a watertight vase. Works fine also with fast spiralize prints.
Else pvc glue also works fine as a coating.

Very well done planter. The design is simple and beautiful.

Is the pot suppose to be printed with the small part on the bed? Seems it might have problems getting knocked off that way. It seems it would be possible to print it the opposite way and not have that issue.

ElmoC -

Yes, the pot prints with the small part on the bed. We have not encountered any problems with the part getting knocked off. The part was designed to be printed this way so it can be printed without supports and no bridging.

Wouldn't PLA biodegrade over time with continued contact with water?

I'm thinking either print in ABS, or apply a varnish/clear coat to the print after it's done to ensure longevity...

Pitcherj -

We choose to work with PLA so a wider range of printer owners would be able to print our designs. While PLA is biodegradable it is not water soluble, so using it for a planter should be just fine. And your solution of coating the planter is one we came too as well, which is why we recommend the would glue if you're unable to get a water tight print, or just want some extra protection.

All that said, you could easily print this in ABS, and it would probably print faster since you don't need to print as slowly to get a water tight finish with ABS. I would still recommend 4 top and bottom horizontal shells though, so there's no "infill layers." And I'm sure a varnish or clear coat would be fine too, we just sought out the wood glue due to it's non-toxic nature (also another reason we choose to work with PLA).

If you do print in ABS, be sure to share your make!

Since I have the small Printrbot Play, I scaled it down to .75 in Cura and printed it out - couldn't be happier! Looking forward to growing something at my desk at work, so much fun.

What is the print dimensions of the Printrbot Play?

And be sure to post your make to the "makes" section of thingiverse!

It's maximum is 100mm wide by 100mm deep by 130mm tall, not much to play with but produces some absolutely beautiful pieces, I printed it with my white filament and plan to color the outside. I am confused as from every appearance it's water tight, curious, where would it leak? I need to seal it first just to make sure, but I wonder if it's an effort I actually need to do.

During our exploration of the design, some of our prints would leak slowly over time. We realized that there were really small gaps in the solid infill layers that would still allow water to find it's way through the bottom of the model. We ended up doing a lot of experimentation and testing to develop those print settings on the instructions tab.

if you followed those settings your part should be water tight. The easiest way to check is just fill it with water and leave it out for a few hours (we recommend putting it in the sink!), you'll know if your print is water tight or not then :)

If it's not water tight or you just want the added protection, we recommend using that TiteBond-3 Wood Glue. Waterproof, but non-toxic.

Really cool design! I love how you've avoided needing supports with all the tapering parts.

Comments deleted.

Does the pot need to be free floating from the reservoir? I have a couple that are kind of a tight fit, and wasn't sure if it was supposed to float on the water, or stay at the same level.

Fangstave -

The pot is supposed to fit into the reservoir and sit at the bottom, not float on the water. The pot was designed to have a nice fit in the reservoir, something akin to a mass manufactured product. If you have a bit of a tight fit it sounds like the right amount.

It sounds like you've printed a few! We'd love to see a picture!

Can this be printed withought the supports? and do i put soil inside the pot or just the plant(sorry stupid question)?

Darathy -

This can be printed without supports. Check out the instructions tab for details on print settings to get the most out of this model.

And yes, you need to put soil inside the pot. Check thingiverse user MartinWrap's make: https://www.thingiverse.com/make:146694

Self-Watering Planter (Small)

I don't know if its just Slic3er, but I notice that there are lots of little "beads" inside of the main wall of both parts, and this hasn't really allowed my to print this nicely without a weird "smudge" that I think is formed when the head goes to the next layer, and starts at the same place (this also causes a Z scar, but my printer has always done this), however there is a split second that no plastic is being extruded for one reason or another causing the mildly annoying smudge on the outer wall.

This doesn't sound like anything we've encountered in our development. Can you post a picture?

Also, what's your nozzle size?

I'm using a 0.4mm nozzle on a hexagon 1.74mm hotend.

Montiey -

It's hard to diagnose without seeing a picture, but from the sound of it, you might want to calibrate your extruder retraction settings. This will probably help with both the Z Scar you mentioned your printer has always done, and with the smudge on the planter. In particular, experiment with the "extra length after retraction" setting in Slic3r to see if this helps.