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Published on Apr 29, 2015
This DIY tutorial explains how to build an S.I.P. Raised Bed. But going further, it also teaches the fundamental mechanics of a self-watering system. Although this focuses on a wicking bed, the same principles apply to sub-irrigated tote containers. You'll be able design and build a water-saving grow system that meets your individual requirements.
QUICK SPECS: • Internal Dimensions (select your own length & width): 71.75" L x 30" W x 16.5" (deep) • Over Flow Drain Hole Height: 3.25" up from bottom • Recommended Gap Between Drain Pipes: 0.25" (minimum) - 0.75" (maximum)
A self-watering garden bed translates into easy gardening! But you may wonder: What type of materials should I use? Is treated lumber bad? What kind of lining should I use? How deep should the bed be? How high should the overflow drain be? Should the pipes be wrapped? Do you need a plastic cover? What kind of dirt or soil should I use? What kind of potting mix do you need? Do you need to use fertilizer strips?
Once you have the answers to these questions, all of the guess work is removed. The only thing left is for you to start designing and building! Once you've made the jump to a sub-irrigated garden, you'll quickly appreciate the convenience. This allows you to be away for longer periods. Rain water is collected and saved for later use. When you do need to water, it's so easy. You'll love it, and your plants will love YOU!
NOTE: I used a couple bags of Miracle Gro potting mix, which I bought in bulk for CHEAP. That stuff works (although it is synthetic). However, you can go purely organic in your mix composition if that is your preference. Use whatever ingredients conform to your gardening philosophy. Just be sure to follow the guidelines discussed in the video.