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Have a great invention to help with gardening? Are you the self-reliant type that prefers Building It Yourself vs. buying it? Share and discuss your ideas and projects with other members.

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Old October 17, 2008   #16
mdvpc
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Robin-Good idea. I may try that. Thanks for posting that.
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Old January 11, 2009   #17
decius
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Michael-

Do you have an update on how this is working?

Also, did you still incorporate Tomato Tone into the soil? (I think I am going to try that this year; I have never used fert. in the soil at planting time.)

Elizabeth
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Old January 11, 2009   #18
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Michael, awesome. Last year, on my first year tomato growing season I planted tomatoes in way too small containers. A friend at work taught me his mom's version of "plant nanny" - - - a 2-liter soda pop bottle/plastic!

The wine bottle version is prettier though.
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Old January 11, 2009   #19
mdvpc
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Elizabeth-great to see you back at the forum. What you going to grow? I am using plant tone- got 80 pounds with a shipping charge of only 8.95. its 5-3-3 with all the minors. Real good. Also using myco at transplantation time and soil activator from T&J.

I should not have used plant nanny's in the greenhouse because no need to. I am going to use them on selected containers this summer. Stay tuned.

Moon-they are real nice looking. But nothing wrong with the 2 liter soda bottle! Whatever works, works.
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Old January 11, 2009   #20
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I tried these in the past; I'm going to make some more for this summer too: You Grow Girl, Make Your Own Pop Bottle Irrigation System

They're simple to make; & I've learned how to use twisted & bent wire hangers to support them too,
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Old January 22, 2009   #21
the999bbq
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hi guys,

I have an alternative for watering with the wine bottle, not only cheaper but also unlimited in its use throughout the garden. Problem with all bottle-type watering devices is that the opening(s) is/are going to get stuck with dirt over some time (it's going to happen, you just don't know when and than we try to delay this moment by stuffing permeable things into the holes).
I got myself a glass drill and drilled a little hole in the bottom of the winebottle, most winebottles have a bottom that goes slightly inwards, so that hole in the bottom never touches the soil (thus never clutters, well almost never, but at least you don't have to digg up the bottle, and just shake the bottle to remove the cluttering). You have the drills in different sizes so you can "adjust" the flow of speed to your needs (once, or if you start small, a limited number of times ;-) ).

You (at least I) break some bottles while making them but when you got the hole they go a long time and they do look stylish in the garden in their upright position (however you do have to convince people from time to time that you do not have a drinking problem yet solved a watering problem). To fill them you simply submerse them in your watercontainer (fill up in now time) and with your thumb closing the "classic" opening you can walk the distance ('under pressure' would Bowie say)...

So for about 5 dollars/euros/pounds (at least recession is good for one thing ;-) ) you can make as many watering bottles as you like...

You probably can't make the hole small enough so that the water (750ml) is dispersed over many hours, but the watering happens a (whole) lot slower than you would do with your watering can so you get a fairly local and deep watering (the water doesn't run of, going everywhere exept for the spot you decided)
the only problems are that they are "only" 750ml so you might have to use two "applications" (bigger ones usually have flatter bottoms; that seems to be a consistency in life not privileged just to bottles) and they do fall over sometimes...

Last edited by the999bbq; January 22, 2009 at 08:51 AM.
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Old January 22, 2009   #22
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"(bigger ones usually have flatter bottoms; that seems to be a consistency in life not privileged just to bottles)"
<snort!>
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Old January 22, 2009   #23
Polar_Lace
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the999bbq View Post
hi guys,

Problem with all bottle-type watering devices is that the opening(s) is/are going to get stuck with dirt over some time (it's going to happen, you just don't know when and than we try to delay this moment by stuffing permeable things into the holes).
I often plant a one-gallon plastic-milk (washed) / water-jugs along the sides of tomato plants. They stick out of the soil by just the top "shoulders" if you can call it by that word; leaving enough room to place water into the top hole with a narrow tipped watering can or the hose. I put 3 holes with a pin-(turkey type, that is used for the turkeys during the Holidays) along the edge that faces the root system and let the water drip slowly into the roots. For this use; make small pin holes.

If it's too hot out; and they need more watering... I just slash a pencil sized hole into the bottom of the jug, stick a thin bamboo stake through the opened top, into the slashed opening at the bottom going in the jug diagonally, and jam the stake into the ground near the plant. Fill as needed. Not good for looks, unless you feel like decorating them; but good for the plants' sake.

My Mother taught me to drill a hole into the cap of a 2 or 3 liter pop bottle, stick in an old shoe lace, a piece of old denim material or a candle wick through the drilled hole (backwards so it looks like a tail coming out of it, rather than into it.) Tie a knot with the material inside of the pop bottle cap, screw the cap back on the bottle with the "tail" sticking out of the bottle and use it as a water-wicking device. You leave ten inches of cotton cloth sticking out to bury it into the soil or pot. Cut off the bottom of the bottle, then invert it into the bottle, then remove inverted bottom for easy filling. Plant this next plant in the soil. Water as necessary.
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Last edited by Polar_Lace; January 22, 2009 at 03:30 PM. Reason: misspelling
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Old January 23, 2009   #24
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I do burry the standard 1.5L plastic soda bottles as well, with loads of holes in the sides and upside down without the cap (think it is the most practised diy watering solution for tomatoes), but there are always bottles that remain half full as the end of the season nears. I have heavy soil that can become hard as a brick in summer, that soil might be more prone to cluttering whatever device you use; Sticking textiles through the holes could preserve the permeability (the "wick" strategy) but I don't like to buy laces or tear t-shirts for that - don't think it's durable and I would need material for 42 bottles ...
Chances are that plants still can suck up water from the bottles that seem cluttered but still I use my wine bottles as an 'always delivering' backup.
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Old January 23, 2009   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the999bbq View Post
Sticking textiles through the holes could preserve the permeability (the "wick" strategy) but I don't like to buy laces or tear t-shirts for that - don't think it's durable and I would need material for 42 bottles ...
Cotton Denim is very durable (meaning of): a heavy, Z-twist, twill cotton for jeans, overalls, and other work and leisure garments.

I never buy the material for that either;
that would be against my golden rule of recycling! I just use old denim jeans that need to be thrown out. As for the shoelaces; I never buy them either.

But I did get a shoe box full of them once, at a garage sale; the woman was throwing them away 'cause she didn't know that anyone had any use for them. I got it for 50 cents! The box was jam-packed with them.

(I was thinking of using them to tie the tomato plants upwards with.)

I use old t-shirts & clothing that need to be thrown away. Some I use for cleaning & dusting.

~* Robin
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Old January 23, 2009   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the999bbq View Post
I do burry the standard 1.5L plastic soda bottles as well, with loads of holes in the sides and upside down without the cap ----but there are always bottles that remain half full as the end of the season nears. ------------
Here is the physics:

Water flow cannot be constant in this setup. Hydrostatic pressure is higher when the bottle is full, water will flow more. When the water level is lower the pressure will get less and less.

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Old January 23, 2009   #27
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LOL - this post came up in my email (following the great info from folks here) alongside a wilmington freecycle.com offer of 8 cases of wine bottles! DH actually winced as I read him a few posts here & then the freecycle post! I already have 2 L soda bottles being saved for me so I reckon I'd better pass on the wine bottles... so difficult after following this thread for several days... must resist....
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Old January 26, 2009   #28
Penny
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I have seen old wine bottles used as lights.
A cottage next to our friends, they take strands of twinkle lights, and put one light per bottle, into the bottle, and then stick the neck of the bottle into the ground, and it marks the path down to the dock, and gives a soft light at night.
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Old January 26, 2009   #29
stormymater
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so the strand goes between the wine bottles too?
******I*I******I*I******I*I******I*I*******

Last edited by stormymater; January 26, 2009 at 11:36 AM. Reason: dinna come out right
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Old January 26, 2009   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stormymater View Post
so the strand goes between the wine bottles too?
******I*I******I*I******I*I******I*I*******
Sorry, i guess i didnt really clarify that huh....i guess that it would, or you could bury it, since its Christmas lights
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