Report on Permablitz #13

Permablitz #13 was held at Kaine and Rachel’s place in Katikati on Saturday 21 September.

Rachel was delighted that the gale force winds and torrential rains had done their thing on Friday night, which meant Saturday morning was the perfect weather to get stuck into the blitz.  The main jobs on the day were making the wicking beds and planting.  Below is the plan and drawings for the three wicking beds:

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Hugo led the construction of the wicking beds, starting with pre cut 4-meter Macrocarpa boards.  The finished height was 400mm high with corner supports and a centre brace.

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The wicking beds are an improvement on raised beds as they have a wrapped, leaky pipe which runs through the bottom.  This, along with the plastic liner allows efficient water use, watering plants from the bottom up.  Watering is done by sticking a hose in the open end of the pipe and letting the bed get saturated.  It’s fantastic for times of drought, for people who are away a lot, or for those who forget to water their veggies.

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Before the pipe is buried, it is wrapped with a long, white stocking, a
“sock filter” from the building supply store.  This keeps the fine bits of dirt from clogging the pipe.

The team then got onto wheel barrel duty and filled the bottom of the beds with 100ml of smooth river rocks (so not to puncture the plastic), then weed mat stapled to the wood.  They then repeated layers of basic compost pile ingredients: compost, saw dust, grass clippings, horse manure and food scraps.  A mix of topsoil and compost finished the beds, and voila!

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Here are a couple of photos of the planting that happened on the day, besides the wicking beds.

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A great day of learning and working hard by all! Kaine, Rachel and their two children will be eating fruit & veggies from this garden in no time! And they may even get to sneak in a Christmas holiday and come back to ingredients for a salad, thanks to the wicking beds.

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Check out the Permablitz Bay of Plenty’s Facebook page for more photos of this great day!

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