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Wicking Beds

Where we discuss challenges, experiments, inspirations, links, questions and answers to do with wicking beds. Read more about wicking beds here.

Members: 38
Latest Activity: Apr 20

Discussion Forum

Rain and the Wicking Bed Blues

Started by Elaine de Saxe. Last reply by Andrew Cumberland Apr 20. 4 Replies

Seven inches of rain - right, no more watering for a while.Wrong!The wicking beds can only contain as much water as their reservoirs will hold. The rest just overflows.Obvious. Yes, if I had thought…Continue

Tags: water reservoir, water storage, wicking beds

TRIAL WICKING BED

Started by Christa. Last reply by Jeff Kiehne Mar 13. 10 Replies

This is just a short note to let you know about an experiment I made with a wicking bed.About a year ago, I trialled a wicking rectangular garden bed (about 1.8m x 1.2m) with about 300 mm tin sides,…Continue

Tags: trialled., System, Wicking, Different

Some Notes on Wicking Beds for the Garden Visit 5th March 2017

Started by Elaine de Saxe. Last reply by Elaine de Saxe Mar 4. 6 Replies

Wicking beds come in a variety of sizes and styles. They have one thing in common: they are self-watering pots with the only drainage a place for water to overflow.Here we have 2 types of…Continue

Tags: wicking, wicking beds

Very simple self-watering pot

Started by Janet Fong. Last reply by Elaine de Saxe Jan 7. 6 Replies

I spent $15 on two self-watering pots and decided to add a barrier as any water holding area is often a breeding ground for mosquito larvae.I'm not sure if you would call this a wicking pot but it…Continue

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Comment by Andrew Cumberland on February 28, 2014 at 22:45

The bits are already bought Valerie.  1.8 m x 0.9.  Once it's built, no tool shall be used in that bed! It's hands only. 

Comment by Valerie on February 28, 2014 at 22:31
One piece of advice from me, go small. One of my wicking bed has a leak....too bad. I am not shoveling 750kg of gravel out of it.
Comment by Andrew Cumberland on February 28, 2014 at 20:05

Elaine will be proud of me - I am making my first wicking bed this weekend.  

Comment by Elaine de Saxe on November 19, 2013 at 22:35

Woo hoo, did you did you check the prices? Out of my league.

Comment by Valerie on November 19, 2013 at 21:27
Also

I think I have found a viable alternative to PVC: EPDM.

Ethylene propylene diene (EPDM) type rubber is recommended by the Danish Environmental Protection Authority as an alternative to PVC.

EPDM is reusable, recyclable, and has better environmental impact profile than PVC. It is available in custom cut sizes as pond liner for water gardens at many garden centres and is available online at most pond supply places.

Here is an example of an online retailer selling EPDM lining:
http://creativepumps.com.au/zpumps/pond_liner/clearpond_epdm_liner/...
Comment by Valerie on November 19, 2013 at 21:24
Found this on a forum http://milkwood.net/2010/05/11/how_to_make_a_wicking_bed/ re no plastic lining..."The issue with the plastic has been solved by some people by using bentonite clay for lining the reservoir.A natural volcanic clay, many kitty litters are 100% bentonite clay.It contains beneficial minerals in fact. You mix it into the top few inches of soil of your reservoir pit. Its got to be damp soil . Then you pound it to create a sealing layer. Have heard it is working for some. I did a several miniature pits but couldnt make them hold water for long. In one experimental pit I used clay from the back yard. It worked better than the bentonite.
Permacultureglobal.com has a few good articles on wicking beds. Mine is there with photos of the FANTASTIC results we got."
Comment by Lissa on November 13, 2013 at 4:39

I just hate plastic Elaine :(

Comment by Elaine de Saxe on November 11, 2013 at 6:53

Not a job undertaken lightly :-( It took us 2 hours each x 10 beds. The plastic is a challenge even if the big bins I use were still available, they are plastic. There's no real separation from the microbes - you just add them in the form of compost made in contact with the soil and including worms of both types (soil workers and compost) and it's then a self-supporting system so long as it's fed and watered.

Comment by Lissa on November 11, 2013 at 6:12

Always interested in learning new things :)

I've done smaller self watering pots in the dim dark past. If we get another drought I would have to think about digging out 3 x 4m raised beds (my maths is iffy but I come up with 6 cubic metres of soil), not something I would look forward to plus there's my hatred of plastic (the liner) and seperating my garden soil from the activity in the surrounding soil (microbes, worms). But if had to be done to ensure food production I would have to consider it.

 

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