Thursday, March 12, 2009

Two in one day, you're so lucky!

As mentioned in the previous post I just finished looking through food from small spaces or whatever it's called. In the book the author gives detailed instructions on making your own self watering planters. JACKPOT! While the article I just read in Mother Earth News on container gardening touts commercial self watering containers as "inexpensive" I think fifty bucks is exorbitant. So this make it yourself solution is ideal. There are several models in the book, one of which I've already done with success, and another I plan on trying very soon. The one I've already made is a sterilite storage container from target, while not the prettiest thing it gets the job done and houses one of the brandywine tomatoes and three basils. It will be perfect for carrots and greens and peas next winter. I've obtained three more sterilites to guessed it, three more selfwaterers. Basically what you do is create a reservoir in the bottom of the container by cutting the lid to fit inside and sit ontop of two bricks or woodblocks. You then cut a hole in the lid (which is now actually the "bottom" of the planter) and insert a basket extending down into the reservoir to act as a wick from which the rest of the soil will draw water. I didn't have a suitable basket so I punched holes in a plastic gallon flower pot. You also cut a smaller hole in the lid to put a piece of PVC piping through, this is where you'll be putting the water into the reservoir from. you fill it all up with soil, add water through the pvc, add plants and you're set. Oh, also drill holes through the sterilite at the top of the reservoir for drainage.
The planter I intend to try soon is a variation of the same thing but with 2, 5 gallon buckets.
If this makes no sense whatsoever, check out the book.
My planter costs 16 bucks total, including soil, and it's ritzy soil...suck on that Mother Earth News!!! Just kidding, I love them.

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