Last weekend, I built another wicking bed, this time a little larger than the first one. I had to dismantle the first wicking bed that I built to make a space for the Cob Oven, which was a shame, because I am just starting to run out of space!
I cheated a little and bought some kit garden beds from Bunnings, because I just did not have the time to make them up. I managed to get them for $50 each and stacked them two high. They are made from Ammoniacal Copper Quaternary (ACQ) treated pine which does not contain Arsenic like normal CCA treated pine. Safe for garden beds.
Here are a few photos of Jake (my daughter Megans boyfriend) and I making the bed.
The beds are already built at this stage. It was as simple as following the instructions.
Then we stapled the liner into place. It is thick builders plastic. Then I laid down the ag-pipe and fixed it in place. The pipe was long enough to form a big U shape. (sorry for the blurry photo)
We filled it up with sand that was left over from the cob oven.
Just checking that everything is still fastened.
Then I drilled a hole with a spade bit to put in the overflow pipe. It is just below the top of the plastic and I banged in a short length of 20mm plastic electrical conduit that I had laying around.
I then laid an old cotton blanket that was folded in half to separate the sand reservoir from the compost lay that I then added. The blanket (you can use expensive geo-textile) stops the sand and compost from mixing, but still allows the water to wick through. Then I added water through the pipe to let it settle and then topped up the compost where it had subsided.
Once the bed was wet, I planted out some celery, mizuna, rocket and rainbow chard. This will be our summer salad bed. It all grew well in the previous wicking bed as they are all thirsty plants, especially the celery. Looking forward to the first harvest. I should only have to water it about twice a week in the heat of summer and may even get to plant a second crop.
|Teddy likes the new veggie patch!
Has anyone else made a wicking bed lately?