So here we go with a tutorial, the photos being part of the description.
An old bath.
You will need a handy person to build a frame to hold the bath in place. This is made from heavy duty pipe account the weight of the bath when complete. Hubby has made this one at a good working height for me.
50mm storm water pipe (long piece to water into reservoir and the small piece gets attached to the drain piece).
40mm P & W drain piece (as shown in second pic).
A tube of silicon to seal around bath inside and out where P&W fits.
Ag pipe (found in hardware stores).
Shade cloth and scissors to cut it. You can use weed mat too.
Zip ties or string.
Step 1: To place drainage pipe into your bath.
(A little complicated for me to explain as hubby is the one who does this).
Remove the old brass plug surround from the bath so you can fit the new P&W drain pipe in its place. The small piece of PVC is used with this drain pipe. You need to add silicon to seal around the area.
It then needs to be joined to the longer piece of PVC. We do this by adding an elbow piece. This photo hopefully helps show what is needed. The ag pipe is cut to the size of roughly 1.5metres, depending on the size of your bath.
This is what it should look like once the shade cloth is put on the ag pipe and attached to the 90 degree angle piece. Now this is all done it is time to set up the wicking bath/bed.
Step 3: Place the bath where you want it and level off with a spirit level. They must be level to drain well.
Step 5: Now the rocks can go in.
You may need to hold the pipe down while you add rocks so that it is held to the bottom of the bath. The rocks have a habit of slipping under the pipe. The idea is to just cover the ag pipe up to the top of the drain pipe. This is not a good pic to show that, but hopefully you get the idea. More rocks were added until I could no longer see the pipe.
Step 6: On top of the rocks goes the shade cloth that has been pre-cut to size. We double the cloth for extra protection to stop debris from getting through to the rocks below.
Step 7: You will need to cut a small hole that can be slipped over the long piece of pvc pipe, like this pic.
I should mention that I use a face mask when handling anything dusty or mouldy in the garden. We must look after our lungs. Better to be safe than sorry.
Step 8: The straw gets put in on top of the shade cloth. I used biscuits from a bale of oaten hay. It needs to be fairly thick/dense. The straw is what wicks the water up from the reservoir below.
Step 10: Once filled you can then put the hose in the pipe and fill until water runs out the plug hole underneath.
Like so. And then you are done!
I have transferred my strawberry plants over and covered them to protect from any frosts that may be around.
I think that is it.
I am not very good at writing tutorials so just ask away if you have any further questions.
Here is a link to tell you a little bit different way to make a wicking bath.
And a video from Rob Bob showing how he does a wicking bath.
The wicking method is a great way to save water. Where we live there is very little rain so it costs a fortune to keep a garden (whether it be flowers or veggies), because mains water is so very expensive. Sometimes we can go months without receiving a drop of rain. I am pleased to say that since I have been using this method for growing veggies, my bill has more than halved and my veggie production has increased ten fold. This is great news on both accounts.
See you soon!