Looking at the long-range forecast, it seems that dry and hot El Niño weather will soon be returning. It can make it difficult to keep your vegies thriving, or even alive sometimes, especially if water restrictions are imposed.
But there is a waterwise gardening innovation that is sweeping the world at the moment — wicking beds. To get a better idea about how wicking beds work, you can read more on the SAGE Project website, or try a google search and see for yourself how popular this water-saving method of gardening has become.
In a nutshell, water is stored in a reservoir filled with gravel underneath the garden bed. The water wicks up through the gravel and passes up into the soil above, supplying exactly the right amount of moisture from the bottom up and eliminating waste from the guess-work involved with a top down irrigation system.
It is water conservation at its best.
You can build your own wicking beds, as shown on the SAGE Project website, but a far more convenient (not to mention labour-saving) approach is to install ready-made modular fibreglass beds. This is the perfect solution for people with no backyard or for renters who would like to be able to grow some of their own food.
These modular wicking beds are made locally, are sturdy and lightweight, and are manufactured to an outdoor standard. They can be used stand alone or as part of a four or six bed rotational system.
The beds come pre-drilled for the water inlet and outlet and all the necessary pipes, brackets and bits & pieces are supplied. All you need is level ground (or you might like to construct a raised platform — just make sure it’s level), some gravel about 14mm round, some geotech fabric, your soil and mulch. Let it rest for a week or two after it’s installed, then start planting!
A modular wicking bed not only reduces the time you spend watering, it avoids any problems with tree root invasion, reduces weeding and ant & slug problems, and ensures the perfect balance of moisture in the soil for optimum plant growth.
They are available in brown, terracotta or green in the standard dimensions of 2400mm x 1200mm x 450mm or a slimline version of 1800mm x 600mm x 450mm. An optional attractive timber frame for the slimline wicking bed is also available for a small additional cost.
For more information, call us at ESD on (02) 4474 5903 or come in and see us at our store on Church Street, Moruya.
Discounts available for purchases of 3 or more wicking beds.