Does anyone know if gardeners.com has regular sales at some point in the year on their self-watering containers?
I've never seen big SWC's on sale cheap. If they were I'd probably buy a few. I made one last year out of a couple of 5 gal buckets, and it worked really well.
The basic answer is no. They ocassionally offer free shipping which can save a bit. In general most of the products they sell are significantly more expensive than the same or similar items sold by others. I like doing business with them in spite of that because the products they sell are of good quality, they sometimes carry items you can't find anywhere else and they have a lot of good information on their website. They are an employee owned company and I actually like getting their emails.
As for SWCs, there is a great variety available. I recently saw some on sale at home depot for about $20. They were obviously cheap, but serviceable.
The garden supply SWCs are the best quality ones, I still have some that were used for over 12 years, no sign of cracking or damage or anything. Much better quality than the Earthbox ones I've seen at the local nursery store.
Since I don't use them anymore, I'd be willing to give mine away (5 units) to anyone who wants to come get them in the California Bay Area. They've been retrofitted with a level valves for automatic watering and holes drilled for extra aeration in the bottom layer between the soil and reservoir.
emgardener - If I lived close, I'd be there tomorrow! I'm very glad to hear they lasted so well. We've decided to wait until next year now, but I'm glad to know the GS lasted so well. They also have larger reservoirs than the EarthBox - very important in a climate with 100' temps at midnight.