Photo by Greenscaper
This planter now installed on the Waterpod shows clearly how a sub-irrigated planter (SIP) works. It emulates the sub-irrigated utility bucket planter (aka erroneously as "self-watering") in the foreground. There are now six of these gray planters on board growing heirloom tomatoes.
The clear SIP demonstrator is made from a party (ice) bucket with a clear cookie container glued (clear Goop) to the bottom. There are three party cups inserted in holes in the bottom of the bucket. They act as soil wicks. The planter holds three heirloom tomato plants grown from seeds, moved up into pop/soda bottle planters and now this demonstrator SIP. Within a weeks time the roots grew out to the edge of the planter and are clearly visible.
One of these SIP demonstrators should be in every school in America. Maybe then we would overcome our antiquated horticultural education that inhibits growing food in the city. It is truly a national disgrace.
These planters will produce in the range of 50% more food per square foot, while saving water, nutrients and precious time. All that is needed is sunlit space even if it is paved.
Come to the Waterpod and see this and other urban gardening methods. There are many other utility bucket planters with drain holes on the Waterpod. We are going to attempt to convert them to sub-irrigation without replanting. If it works this would be a solution for many who were unaware of SIPs and planted in drain hole buckets.
Read this prior post for directions to the Waterpod which is now berthed in Brooklyn. Next week it will move to Staten Island.