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Water Reservoir and wicking for my big container

Posted by tnkrer 5b, MA (My Page) on
Thu, May 17, 12 at 9:51

I have made a big container (4' x 3'6", height 3') This being my first time, I have bunch of questions .. I am creating multiple threads with questions on each different topic.

This one is about the water reservoir. I have built the planter using the design from the natural handyman april issue. Photobucket
8 perforated flexible drain pipes covered with cotton cloth will serve as water reservoir. The growing media between the pipes will also be in the water since water will seep out of those pipes and saturate the mix at that level. The container base is lined with pond liner and there is an overflow hole/tube at 4" from bottom. I am thinking of adding cork float to figure out when water is low. Also instead of 8 separate pieces, I am thinking of keeping the drain pipe as one piece. (I think I will use some plastic cleat to keep the pipe from unfolding)

Here is my container. (The base is ready, just not in the picture) Photobucket

So now on to questions.
There is no clear separation between water reservoir and growing media. (However the pipes are covered with cloth, so roots should not go in there). I am thinking that I will cover the water level (pipes and grow media) by two layers of landscape fabric to prevent the roots from going into water.
To allow wicking, I will cut multiple 2"x4" square holes (about 12, 1 per sq ft) and between two plants (so not directly under the root)

Anybody has done a similar design for container? Do you see any problems here? Any modifications you think will improve the self watering aspect?

Thanks for reading all this and your help. My cherry tomato plant in the house has a tomato on it .. So I am excited and need to get this done quickly :)

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Water Reservoir and wicking for my big container

one layer of landscape fabric is enough. and i dont see the need for 2x4 holes in it.

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