My Vegetable Garden (heavy Rainfall Design)

  1. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    Mark submitted a new showcase item:

    My Vegetable Garden (heavy Rainfall Design)

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  2. stevo

    stevo Backyard Farmer Premium Member GOLD

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    it looks good in the photos. More garden less mowing :cheer:

    might be hard to mow/trim grass around the boulders?
     
  3. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    No it's not too bad actually. Of course, a straight edge is always easier for grass trimming boarders, but I guess I should have mentioned besides keeping the gravel held into position, the gaps in the boulders also let water run out - this is VERY important otherwise in heavy rain a pool effect would happen.

    A straight garden edge made from sleepers etc over this sized area would hold natural run-off in more than boulders and possibly create washout or pooling problems.

    Yes it's definitely less mowing :):thumbsup: However, it's not an end to weeds unfortunately due to weeds and grass still growing through the gravel - I just have to keep on top of it that's all.
     
  4. stevo

    stevo Backyard Farmer Premium Member GOLD

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    You could chuck a couple of AG pipe trenches in that run off down the slope? .. or down to the future Crayfish farm ;)

    While not on the same scale, i had some minor flooding/water pooling issues/constantly wet soil, in the back yard so i dug a AG pipe trench across the whole yard (yard has a slight slope) .. and a 500mm deep x 80mm square hole at the end of the trench , filled with gravel. It takes a fair bit of rain to fill it and then it just flows off in to the neighbours yard as it did before (same as anyones yard in the suburbs)

    That Tiller thing of yours might be a good trench digger?
     
  5. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    You might know how to turn it into a trench digger but it sounds too dangerous for me to try :D

    I can also vouch for the AG pipe. I needed to drain excess water from the bottom of our orchard (I may have mention this somewhere else) so I dug a trench and pointed it down the hill (hired a digger for the job) about 1/2 metre deep filled with gravel and used the AG with a sock (cause we have clay soil) and it does a great job. Saved a few trees also that were suffering from water logging.
     
  6. stevo

    stevo Backyard Farmer Premium Member GOLD

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    What did you do with the dirt from the trench? My dirt was good enough to build up the vege gardens.

    Just tow the Tiller behind the Rideon mower, what could possibly go wrong? :cheers:
     
  7. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    I've got a rubbish loamy clay mix :cry: so I used the spare dirt to fill some holes/divots down the back. I have a hard time growing anything here without a lot of work to improve the topsoil.

    It's hard enough controlling my tiller with two hands let alone free-wheeling behind my mower - I'd have no garden left! :p
     
  8. stevo

    stevo Backyard Farmer Premium Member GOLD

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    what do you do to improve the soil? just keep adding mulch on top? or do you have to add different types of soil and mix it in?
     
  9. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    All those things - I buy good topsoil to start me off in places (few barrels on top of my clay base usually gives most fruit trees a good enough chance) and I prefer to 3/4 fill my raised beds with good soil. Then, I use my own compost and mulch/manure mix to build up the rest of the fill, microbes, worms, and a general healthy live soil.

    Citrus trees will happily grow in clay as long as there is a little topsoil and so will many others TBH but then there are trees which will surely die if planted directly into clay or if the topsoil isn't at least a metre deep (Avocados are one of those).
     
  10. Steve

    Steve Valued Member Premium Member

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    Hey Mark, I've always wondered how gardens this size set up watering systems?
    I would think it would take hours to water something like this. Not ideal.
    Can you explain your system please?
    Does it all come back to one pipe, do you use a timer system, is it buried, do you use rain water tanks for watering?
    Tell me all.....

    Cheers,
     
  11. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    Exactly right, hand watering is possible if you have lots of time (retired etc) but a watering system is the best way to water a large vegetable garden.

    The process to actually make a watering system is really quite simple and relatively low cost. I buy standard 15 mil irrigation piping and fittings from Bunnings or any garden centre and you practically just join them together in whatever shape and size you require.

    Once you have the skeleton piping around the beds then it's just a matter of using off shoots of 4 mil small rubber hoses joined to risers with the little sprinkler heads on top. You do this by creating a small hole in the irrigation piping with a little tool often included in the irrigation kits (like a hole punch) then a little joiner is pushed into the hole acting as a leak proof connection between the 15 mil piping and the 4 mil hose leading to the riser. I then position a riser about 1 metre apart or 4 rises should be enough for a garden bed 2.4 x 2.4 m square.

    The irrigation piping is dug in shallow trenches only needs to be a few inches down between the garden beds and from the source to the vegetable garden. Obviously, I leave the piping exposed around and on top of the garden beds themselves.

    At the supply end, it all comes back to the one source. I have a water tank (rain and bore) with its own electric pump got it from Masters (German engineered made in China 2 year unconditional warranty $200) top piece of kit and can run 4 plus taps at once - not that it's ever needed. I have a manifold with several connections and three separate timers (cheap dial ones) which last for years. I set the timers to go at different times in the morning covering different parts of the garden. If you have a large area to water you can't just use one tap and timer because of the drop in water pressure so I have mine divided into 3 sections.

    Also, if you are watering different things like pots or seedlings you may require a separate timer and connection than the general garden because pots and seedlings will need less watering more often (3 times a day in the hot sun) and the rest of the garden may only need a water twice a week (if you get what I mean).

    There are a million different sprinkler heads you can get and also the old drip irrigation was fashionable in the drought but I have tried them all and I have settled with really only two types: which is, for raised garden beds the system I described with a full-circle sprinkler head and for furrows (my traditional patch at the back) I use 15 mil pre-made drip irrigation hose placed on top of the furrows/mounds under biodegradable weed matting. You can get the drip irrigation hose in 15 to 30 metre lengths (from memory...I think). I wouldn't use any type of drip irrigation in raised garden beds because it won't spread evenly and it gets in the way.

    An in-line filter or two won't go astray either (they're only a few bucks) and they help to filter the water from the source to stop small objects (like dead ants) from getting caught in the tiny sprinkler heads but if the heads do get clogged a thin piece of wire poked through the hole unclogs them easy enough. Filters will save you having to do this too often.

    I really should write an article and do a video on irrigation - think I have got a vid somewhere... We might start a specific irrigation thread later on.
    Any other Qs just fire away :)
     
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  12. stevo

    stevo Backyard Farmer Premium Member GOLD

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    soon you'll need a Center Pivot Mark :D
     
  13. Mark

    Mark Founder Staff Member

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    :ROFL: Yeah good one... Actually, if I had one as wide as the patch which moved from one end to another that'd work! Little bit of an overkill do you think? :p
     
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