Growing your own food is a great way to save money and limit chemical intake from those shelf stable meals, but growing things takes skills some of us don’t have. Maybe a loved one waters without your knowledge and the both of you drown your little plant trying to love it too much or worse yet over-fertilizerization. No one wants to put up with that much crap and plants unfortunately can’t get off the pot!
I was born missing a green thumb and have always had trouble guessing how much water a plant needs. Sure a relatively hardy plant or those cracks in the driveway I can keep growing for a long time but something edible like tomatoes, don’t even bother! Seasons, sun exposure, zones, seed sewing; I can’t keep all that info straight much less when I last watered a plant, but a young lady told me a trick that may give me the opportunity to turn that all around. Wicking.
That’s right, just like an oil lantern you can wick your plants to make them water themselves, and all you need is a little yarn and a pan to coil it in. She described the process by coiling a string of yarn in a pot just before you add soil and your plant. I wrapped my yarn around the interior wall of the pot and fed the remaining down through the drain hole into a pan underneath. Holding the yarn secure, I lined the pot with moist dirt, added my plant, filled the bottom pan with water and wallah! Done. I just add water to the pan when needed and the yarn does the rest.
For best results raise the pot above the water with a plastic lighting grid cut to fit the pan. Keeps your pot looking good by preventing water stains and stops soil from slopping out of the pot during watering. Of course for your fertilizer this doesn’t help but… Baby steps, baby steps. One day, with care and attention to detail, we may grow that green thumb we always dreamed of, but till then I will just buy the damn tomatoes.