Saturday, March 16, 2013


So I noticed I'm lazy! Not news to some, I'm sure! Still, I'm all for making life easier if possible without falling into the trap of enslaving future generations to gratify my wants (dumping the real costs of environmental degradation on my grandchildren and great-grandchildren).

But the problem is watering. To keep my Balcony PermacultureFood Forest watered has thus far required several way, way too many trips back and forth to the kitchen sink to refill the milk jug that serves for now as my watering can. (Those who remember my previous gardens will wonder at that, but I got rid of nearly all my tools and accessories when I moved across the country from Ontario to British Columbia nearly 3 years ago.)

I'm ok with making one trip if it's like ... super-efficient, but realize there's only so much I can physically carry on that trip from the kitchen sink to the balcony.

I've toyed with some sort of hose that will reach from sink to balcony, but other than the shopping channel's collapsible hose version, I've found nothing that grabs me yet in my vague attempts at browzing through the garden centres, etc., locally. Plus, I'm kind of averse to buying another plastic thing created from petro-chemicals and shipped from who knows where.

So, I'm into scavenging. I think that at least is better than encouraging somebody to make more crap to crap up our environment when somebody decides it's garbage.

Here's where the internet comes to the rescue. Here are some of the ideas I've gleaned by roaming around and that I think I may be able to adapt to my own situation.

A way to connect multiple buckets, such as I have, to a water butt:

And then there's the buckets themselves, which I can envision making more environmentally friendly by using materials like gravel, seashells (instead of two buckets), and bamboo (for the down-pipe), all fairly easy for me to obtain locally. No need to double-bucket. I can instead use a single bucket, or even better a clay pot, gravel on bottom, straw or landscape fabric to keep soil in place and lengths of bamboo instead of pvc pipe (which has huge issues).

Of course, I realize I have already put the cart before the horse. Besides having many perennial plants in my pots, I have also started planting seeds for this year's annual crops. If I am going to have a self-watering system, I am going to have to retro-fit what I have somehow. Hmmmmm.

I'm going to have to think about the design and materials and whether it's worth it to risk damaging the perennials and re-seeding the rest to retrofit the pots I have! Aaaargh!

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