With a wicking garden bed, you will be able to create a garden anywhere and not have to worry about the daily maintenance of watering the plants. You need to consider the location and the climate when choosing a wicking bed.
If you are unable to water the garden frequently, you can consider the use of self watering garden beds. They are also great for community gardens and school gardens where watering is infrequent. You don’t need to worry about whether the plants will thrive. There is a water reservoir at the bottom of a wicking bed that provides water to the soil. There is geotextile fabric in between the water reservoir and the soil to ensure that soil doesn’t drain into the water. If you have a lot of large trees or plants with deep and invasive root systems, the crops you plant will not have a lot of water to thrive. That is because the invasive roots can absorb much of the water in soil. And if you live in a hot climate with little rainfall, this can essentially be a garden bed that looks after itself. However, you need to make sure that the reservoir is filled and that proper fertiliser is provided for the plants to grow well.
You need to consider what you are planting in the bed. There will be evaporation of water from the surface of the soil and this can concentrate the salts in the soil. So you need to monitor the conditions of the wicking bed carefully to ensure that it is ideal for the plants. You will find that annual vegetables are ideal for wicking garden beds. A wicking bed is similar to a container garden. There is a cost involved in the construction or purchasing of the wicking bed as well. There are several companies that provide wicking beds so you can compare the prices to get an idea of affordability.
There is more flexibility in where and what you can grow when considering wicking garden beds. You can have them placed close to the house so that you can oversee its maintenance easily. And you don’t need to worry about it flooding your basement as the water is securely contained within the garden bed. The plants will stay alive for up to several weeks without you having to water them. But this will also depend on the size of the reservoir and the bed. There are always ways of improving your wicking bed. Mulching will prevent evaporation of water from the soil and this will ensure that the moisture in the soil can keep for a longer time. It will conserve water in the reservoir as well. You can also construct a worm farm in the wicking bed to enrich the soil and allow for better soil drainage. You can also collect the water that flows out from the overflow outlet and use it for a garden bed in the ground as it will be rich in fertiliser.