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Planter Fix: Drill a Drainage Hole

Every planter needs a drainage hole to prevent root rot. TOH shows you how to do it yourself

Container Garden Know-How

Photo by Copyright Karen Bussolini, 2008. All rights reserved.

No matter what kind of planter you have, it needs a drainage hole to prevent root rot. Making the hole yourself is easy—just read on to find the best bit for the job.

Terra-Cotta and Ceramic

Photo by Ted Morrison

Avoid cracking earthenware by marking your target with tape, then using a masonry bit with a winged tungsten-carbide tip (shown).

Plastic

Photo by Ted Morrison

To drill smoothly through plastic and PVC, use a sharp twist bit made from black oxide (shown). Work slowly to avoid melting the material.

Metal

Photo by Ted Morrison

Opt for a bit made from ultra-durable cobalt steel (shown). For harder metals, first use a center punch to make a dent where you want the hole to be.

Fiberglass

Photo by Ted Morrison

Press the carbide tip of a glass and tile bit (shown) into the pot to keep the bit from walking, then slowly press down with the drill.