30: Autumn 2012

Author: Geoff Aston

The problem with inconsiderate neighbours

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The problem with inconsiderate neighbours
Geoff Aston

Just when everything seems to be in order and growing well, the neighbours provide an unanticipated problem. Why have they arranged their holidays to coincide with ours -AGAIN? How will we ensure that all our pots are watered while we are away?

The pots are those around the front door, by the side of the greenhouse, on the patio, etc, and those in the category “I will keep it in a pot until I decide where to plant it”.

Fortunately, technology provides an answer. Our solution is to gather the pots into one place -on the patio or the lawn -and arrange them in a circle. In the centre is a rotary lawn sprinkler. This is supplied from a tap fitted with a watering timer, such as one from the Hozelock or Gardena ranges. This is set to run for say 15 minutes per day -depends on the sprinkler, water pressure, type of plant.

If the timing is not optimum, or it does not suit every plant, it does not matter for a week or two. Most plants will survive better a little over- or under-watered than not watered at all.

It is possible to include a device which detects if the soil is already wet from rain, and miss that day’s watering, but we have not yet found this to be necessary.

The timer fits direct to the tap, so the hose is not left under pressure except while watering, and is not likely to split or blow off.
The lawn sprinkler should be a simple rotary one, or one we have which has no moving parts and operates on an internal vortex principle. These are not suitable for large areas, but ideal for a circle of pots.

Just make sure to leave the tap turned ON when you leave.

First published in the Shropshire Group Newsletter, January 2012
and subsequently in Cornucopia Issue 30.
© Copyright for this article: Geoff Aston

This article was taken from a copy of Cornucopia that was published in 2012. You could be reading these articles as they are published to a national audience, by subscribing to Cornucopia.

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