Container Gardening Ideas – Try a Self Watering Container!

If your garden plan includes growing fruits and vegetables in containers, try a self-watering container. The Edible Garden at Rodef Shalom is using self-watering containers to take the guesswork out of watering and allow us to water the garden less frequently. On Sunday May 1st, Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade students of the Jacob Religious School planted frost tolerant seeds in the first 2 of our 16 EarthBoxes.  


kids gardening in EarthBox self watering container

2nd Grade students assemble the EarthBox self-watering container

Self-watering containers can be purchased from a number of places or you can make your own.

Jacob Religious School Students planting in self watering container

Add soil, dolomite and fertilizer to the EarthBox

 

Kids put cover on self watering planter

A cover is used to stop weeds and protect from rain and drought

The cover is one of the secrets of the EarthBox gardening success!   After the cover is on, holes are cut and seeds or seedlings are planted.  It is too early to plant most of our fruits and veggies so we planted frost resistant seeds; peas, carrots and radishes.  One week later……..

Peas and radish sprouts planted by the children

Peas and radish planted one week ago

There are many important advantages to using a self-watering container:

  1. a reservoir of water is held in the bottom of the container so you will water less often
  2. the reservoir of water allows the plants to soak up water through the roots as needed 
  3. the plants benefit from deep watering without washing away the expensive fertilizer
  4. the prevention root rot
  5. the yield in your garden is increased

According to the EarthBox website,

Our maintenance-free, award-winning, high-tech growing system controls soil conditions, eliminates guesswork and more than doubles the yield of a conventional garden…with less fertilizer, less water and virtually no effort!

Want to learn more about growing fresh food in containers?

  • Come to one or all of the Free Vegetable Garden Workshops in Pittsburgh at Rodef Shalom Congregation! Click here for dates and times.
  • Josho.com has instructions to build your own self watering container.
  • These books have helpful step-by-step instructions for container gardening:

Amazon Book link to Garden AnywhereAmazon Book link to Incredible Vegetables

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