This is the first wicking bed I built on my own a couple years ago. I installed two on our deck in High River. I had recently completed my Permaculture design certificate and I wanted to test the theory.
Showing the 3″ drainage pipe on the bottom and the plastic liner. some gravel on the bottom to rest the pipe on.
Gravel in, to the top of the pipe. From here, I put landscape fabric in one of the beds, but not the other one. I just replaced these two and can say it made no real difference in the vegetable garden. It might be different if the bed was being used for perennials.
Soil in, just the trim left before planting
Just to show the frame work of the prototype. The issue I found with this design, which I did not diagnose until I dismantled them, was that rodents had gotten in and chewed a hole in the plastic of one. The only reason it stopped working.
This is in September. We camped a lot that summer I remember. I never had to worry about it being watered. A success I would say.
I never did get these hooked up to the down spout, so I did have to fill up the reservoir manually. However, when I was going away for a week, I could fill it up and not worry about it needing water.
The other bed. Also a success.