Watering can

Watering can

A watering can is a portable container, usually with a handle and a spout, used to water plants by hand. It has existed since at least the 17th century and has since been improved.

The capacity of the container can be anywhere from 0.5 litres for use with household plants to 10 litres for general garden use. It can be made out of either metal, ceramic or plastic.

At the end of the spout (a long tube originating at the bottom of the container), a "rose" (a device like a cap with small holes) can be placed to break up the stream of water into droplets to avoid excessive water pressure on the soil or on delicate plants.

John Cleese, in a 1963 Cambridge University Footlights Review ("Cambridge Circus") sketch "Judge Not" described a watering can as: "a large, cylindrical, tin-plated vessel with a perforated pouring piece, much used by the lower classes for the purpose of artificially moistening the surface soil".


The term "watering can" first appeared in 1692. Before then, it was known as a "watering pot".

In 1885 the "Haws" watering can was patented by John Haw. He replaced the top mounted handle with a single round handle at the rear.

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  • watering can — watering cans N COUNT A watering can is a container with a long spout which is used to water plants …   English dictionary

  • watering can — ► NOUN ▪ a portable water container with a long spout and a detachable perforated cap, used for watering plants …   English terms dictionary

  • watering can — n a container used for pouring water on garden plants …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • watering can — noun a container with a handle and a spout with a perforated nozzle; used to sprinkle water over plants • Syn: ↑watering pot • Hypernyms: ↑container • Part Meronyms: ↑handle, ↑grip, ↑handgrip, ↑h …   Useful english dictionary

  • watering can — UK [ˈwɔːt(ə)rɪŋ ˌkæn] / US [ˈwɔt(ə)rɪŋ ˌkæn] noun [countable] Word forms watering can : singular watering can plural watering cans a container used for pouring water on plants, with a handle and a long spout …   English dictionary

  • watering can — a container for water, typically of metal or plastic and having a spout with a perforated nozzle, for watering or sprinkling plants, flowers, etc. Also called watering pot, sprinkling can. [1685 95] * * * …   Universalium

  • watering can — noun A utensil for watering plants, consisting of a container with a handle and long spout, the spout sometimes being fitted with a perforated nozzle. Syn: sprinkling can, watering pot …   Wiktionary

  • watering can — Synonyms and related words: aerosol, aspergil, aspergillum, atomizer, clyster, concentrate sprayer, douche, enema, fountain syringe, mist concentrate sprayer, needle bath, nozzle, shower, shower bath, shower head, sparge, sparger, spray, spray… …   Moby Thesaurus

  • watering can — wa′tering can n. a hand held container for water, typically having a spout with a perforated nozzle, used for watering flowers or plants Also called wa′tering pot . • Etymology: 1685–95 …   From formal English to slang

  • watering can — noun Date: 1692 a vessel usually with a spout used to sprinkle or pour water especially on plants called also watering pot …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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