Garden Infrastructure

11 05 2017

I don’t know if that’s a real word; I just kinda thought it made sense.  There’s a lot of things gardners can do to make things easier for the plants or for the gardener.  I’ll show you the stuff today.

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A list of all the things going on here:

  1. Teepee: I have used that garden teepee for peas in the past.  I have always found them to be great ways to grow vertically.  After you plant the cukes into the ground, put the stakes exactly where you want and then run a string along the outside, rising progressively.
  2. Pea fence: The three lengths of rebar are about 1.5ft in the ground and there is a plastic fence running along it.  Hopefully this works better this year.  Pea fences are good to help you keep all your peas where they are easy to see and you probably use about 25% of the garden space than if you were to let ’em spread along the ground.
  3. The “Hoops”.  Essentially, 2ft pieces of rebar are shoved in the ground at an angle (close to a ft deep).  Each pair has a 5ft length of tube slid onto each side.  Overtop of the hoops we’ll be placing that black hunk of “fabric” called “shade cloth”.  It keeps out bugs and deadens the effect of hot summer sun on plants that don’t necessarily like it scorching (think broccoli, cabbage, kale, some lettuce).
  4. The hat.  Not in place yet but the bale and scraps can be seen.  It will be our mulch this year.  Hopefully it’ll help keep weeds and other garbage at bay.
  5. …..

This deserves its own section in my mind: The watering system.

I found the rain barrel soaker hose online.  It promised the ability to water your garden from your rain barrel, with the barrel DIRECTLY on the ground.  Sounds really good to be true.  So, I purchased it to give it a whirl.

In the meantime, I was waiting for the right opportunity to get a nice gigantic rain tank (I prefer to call it); |Something about 1000 liters.  I found a very reasonably priced one online.  The unit itself was brand new (seal on the output still in tact).

After several sketches and plans to make a layout for the hose that would fit the garden, I lost them and, on game day (today), I just put it together to make it fit.  I thought 100 feet would be easily enough but I see now that is not really the case.  The loops are a bit wider than I would have liked.

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But, so it is.  It is together now and I’ve turned it on.  It was a special moment for me cause I’d been thinking (and HOPING) this set up would work.  I find watering the garden task I never really am set to stay on top of.  I thought a system would help me immensely.  And so when I turned it on and the water starting coming out at a good clip, I was very happy indeed.  I was imaging never fretting about water again.   I noted the time so I could get a sense of the flow rate, and I went inside to lunch up the little guy.

I came out two hours later.  The markings on the rain barrel seem to indicate I’ve only put out just over a 100 gallons.  But more important, the fantastic pace I originally saw coming out of it, was all for nought.  It had slowed down to a TINY trickle and the damp path snaking under the hose itself had not gotten very much wider than what you see in the picture.  Water pressure coming out of the barrel seems consistent.  So, it just may be too low to be very effectual.

With that said, if it just drops out 250 gallons over the course of the day, well, that’s about 2 rain barrels and that is a very decent garden soaking I suppose.

So all things considered, I’m a bit on the fence.

What kinds of interesting things have you used for garden infrastructure?  Old cars?  Refridgerators?  Tubs?  Watering cans?

 

 

Bonus: Watch the consumer made video advertising the product with the barrels at ground level.  The company is Mr. Drip.  I really want to point out how the man is clearly walking down a VERY significant slope to get to his garden from his rain barrels (you can see the slope away from the building in the video).

in the video).

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