Why To Use Two Containers When Making A Self-Watering Container

Posted on May 7 2010 - 3:36am by Mike Lieberman

When I started my balcony garden this year, I changed up how I was making the self-watering containers. Last year I used vinyl tile to separate the reservoir from the plant and soil.

It worked well and served it’s purpose, but I learned my lesson when breaking them down. The containers froze up, and I had to wait three months until I was able to break them down.

As I was breaking them down, I noticed that the weight of some of the soil and plants was causing the tile to break. This caused the plants to become to wet and not allow them to drain.

That got me thinking about using two containers. They are called the reservoir and planting containers. The planting container holds the soil and plant. It has holes cut into the bottom for drainage, the pipe and the wicking basket. The reservoir container holds the wicking basket and the water.

One main difference in how the self-watering containers work is that you can easily remove the planting container from the reservoir container. This makes breaking them down a hell of a lot easier.

It also allows for better separation between the reservoir and the soil. All of the holes at the bottom of the planting container give the soil the chance to drain out any excess moisture and for the roots some more breathing room.

Using the vinyl tile definitely worked, but using two containers is much more sturdy and reliable design. Do you think using two containers is better than vinyl tiles?