Garden Group

Our gardeners have been busy in their gardens. Our members have been keeping the group informed of the interesting projects they have been working on – from clever water wicking gardening systems to beautiful birdhouses.

Below are the instructions for creating a simple wicking garden watering system that Brenda, one of our members recently presented to the group.

Our group intends to put up more photos and links to interesting gardening ideas.

Wicking – Water-wise gardening

How to make a simple wicking pot using plastic bottles


Plastic bottle with fitted cap
Piece of cotton material or paper towel


  1. Cut the bottle in half. The top half of the bottle is for planting up. The bottom half is for the water reservoir.
  2. Sit the top half of the bottle, cap side down into the bottom half of the bottle. Measure the height from base to top. This length plus a bit more is the length of your wick.
  3. Cut a piece of cotton fabric or paper towel this length and about 3cm wide.
  4. Roll it into a long tight cord.
  5. Make a hole in the bottle cap large enough to thread the wick through. (Take if off the bottle first!)
  6. Thread the wick through the cap and screw the cap back on the bottle.
  7. Keeping the wick towards the centre of your pot, fill it with thoroughly wettened potting mix and pot up your plant.
  8. Fill the bottom reservoir with water and make sure the wick is sitting on the base.

Keep an eye on the water level. You may need to put a collar around the reservoir to stop the water from going green.

Thank you to Brenda for sharing this with us

Also see
Plastic bottle vertical garden (also demonstrates the construction above)
Koanga urban garden, NZ How to make a wooden wicking bed
Loganberry Forest Permaculture Homestead, Australia How to build a wicking garden bed and the theory behind how they work
Tubs and pipes version
Another tubs version
How to make a wicking-bed from a recycled IBC (Intermediate Bulk Container)
Hanging plastic bottle garden (not a wicking garden though)