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Seven inches of rain - right, no more watering for a while.


The wicking beds can only contain as much water as their reservoirs will hold. The rest just overflows.

Obvious. Yes, if I had thought about it which I hadn't.

Wondering why some plants were looking sad - Eggplants, Tomatoes and even the Figs and Mulberries. Tested the soil - that's what we were given an index finger for ... checking soil moisture!

Bone dry. Poor plants. All watered now and reviving.

Just have to remember that the wicking beds for all their advantages, are limited by the size of their reservoirs. The shallower the bed, the less depth to store water.

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And as you also noted, your deeper beds with more storage capacity are the only ones that ever pong.

I recently did the same thing with a large self-watering pot :-/

Ah, now I have found out more about that too. Colin Austin reckons that the roots can go right into the reservoir especially if you don't have a 'blanket' between the mix and the reservoir. The ones which pong for me are the 4 Hills brand beds which have not had any deep-rooted plants in them. I am shortly planting Asparagus in those beds and await results with interest.

Things are always so obvious.... in hind sight.  


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Vetiver grass helps to stabilise soil and protects it against erosion.  It can protect against pests and weeds. Vetiver is also used as animal feed. (Wiki.)

GrowVetiver is a plant nursery run by Dave & Keir Riley that harvests and grows Vetiver grass for local community applications and use. It is based in Beachmere, just north of Brisbane, Australia.

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